Upcoming Match-ups

The Stanley Cup has been awarded for the 2017-2018 season, with the Washington Capitals capturing the Cup for the first time in their 44 year history.

Here’s a look at how the odds for all 31 teams ebbed and flowed throughout the 2017-2018 season. For futures odds on the 2018-2019 NHL season, check out our Stanley Cup Futures Guide.

National Hockey League

Remaining Teams

Top Stanley Cup Contenders

  • Things remained (relatively) status quo throughout the season when it came to the major contenders, with the notable exceptions of both the Las Vegas Golden Knights and the Winnipeg Jets.
  • Oddsmakers realized that the Boston Bruins were for real mid-season, greatly shortening their odds after they proved their worth over a large enough sample size.
  • The Tampa Bay Lightning were once again top contenders after a disappointing 2016-2017 campaign that saw them miss the post-season.
  • This year marks the first year since 2009 that a team from California (Los Angeles Kings, San Jose Sharks, or Anaheim Ducks) was not a major contender for the Stanley Cup.

 

2018 Playoff Teams

  • Few expected the Vegas Golden Knights to make the playoffs, much less win the division. Their meteoric rise to the class of the NHL in less than a season is one of the grandest stories in the history of the league.
  • The Edmonton Oilers, early season cup favorites, were once again plagued by managerial ineptitude, missing the playoffs for the 11th time in 12 seasons.
  • The Atlantic and Pacific Divisions continue to house a majority of the weaker teams in the NHL.

 

Canadian Teams

  • It was another disappointing year for Canadian teams in the NHL, with the exception of promising campaigns buoyed by their young stars for both Toronto and Winnipeg
  • Calgary missed the playoffs despite sky-high expectations, and they will be without their first-round draft pick in this year’s draft.
  • Despite reaching the Conference Finals in 2017, the Ottawa Senators had a dreadful regular season, finishing 28th overall.
  • The Montreal Canadiens continue to plummet in relevance after a series of bone-headed management decisions.

 

Eastern Conference

Atlantic Division

  • The Buffalo Sabres, Montreal Canadiens, Ottawa Senators, and Detroit Red Wings were taken off the board early.
  • The Florida Panthers missed the playoffs on the last game of the season, but their 96 points were the highest by any team to ever miss the playoffs. Look for them to rebound in the 2018-2019 campaign.
  • After a streak of 25 consecutive playoff appearances, the Detroit Red Wings missed the playoffs for the 2nd consecutive season.

 

Metropolitan Division

  • It was the largely the usual suspects finishing atop the Metropolitan Division, with the Washington Capitals, Pittsburgh Penguins, finishing first and second respectively.
  • It is not a stretch to say that the Metropolitan Division is the most competitive division in the entire league.
  • The New Jersey Devils rebounded from finishing 26th in the NHL in 2016-2017 to qualifying for a Wild Card position in 2017-2018.
  • After nabbing the 2nd overall selection via the draft lottery last year, the Philadelphia Flyers returned as a force to be reckoned in the Metropolitan Division.
  • The New York Islanders disappointed after a promising 2016-2017 season. If John Tavares departs in the off-season, they’ll be in a world of hurt with a big hole to fill down the middle.

 

Western Conference

Central Division

  • The Winnipeg Jets and Nashville Predators look to be perennial contenders for the next 3-5 years after this season.
  • The talented Dallas Stars faltered once again, missing the playoffs for the second consecutive season.
  • After the worst season since the 2005-2006 lockout (they finished with 47 points) the Colorado Avalanche defied all expectations and qualified for a Wild Card position.
  • The St. Louis Blues missed the playoffs on the last day of the season after trading center Paul Stasny at the deadline, but look for the promising squad led by Doug Armstrong’s visionary managerial ability to rebound next season.

 

Pacific Division

  • Starting out the season at nearly 200 to 1 odds, the Vegas Golden Knights qualified for the postseason in their inaugural season.
  • The Vancouver Canucks missed the playoffs for the third consecutive year.
  • The Arizona Coyotes were one of the first teams taken off the board after recording 2 wins in their first 20 games.
  • Despite having extremely short odds at the beginning of the season, it was another year of failure for the Edmonton Oilers.