2023 Stanley Cup odds: Avs favored to repeat, with Leafs favored in East
With the 2021-22 NHL season officially in the books, it's time to turn the page and start looking ahead to 2022-23.
Which teams are getting the most respect as Stanley Cup favorites on the betting market? Which clubs are expected to struggle? Let's comb through it all.
|Toronto Maple Leafs||+900|
|Tampa Bay Lightning||+1000|
|Vegas Golden Knights||+1500|
|New York Rangers||+2000|
|St. Louis Blues||+2700|
|New York Islanders||+3200|
|Los Angeles Kings||+5000|
|New Jersey Devils||+5000|
|Detroit Red Wings||+7500|
|San Jose Sharks||+7500|
|Columbus Blue Jackets||+10000|
The Avalanche (+425) opened as favorites to repeat as champions. While they have a lot of expiring contracts to navigate through this summer, their star-studded core of Nathan MacKinnon, Gabriel Landeskog, Mikko Rantanen, Cale Makar, and Devon Toews, among others, remains intact. Colorado should be very good again, no matter what happens around that group.
The Toronto Maple Leafs (+900) find themselves right behind the Avalanche. They have a fantastic core in place, but there are a lot of strong support pieces slated to become free agents, with starting netminder Jack Campbell headlining the group. The Leafs need to find a way to add depth and improve their goaltending tandem while on a tight budget if they're finally going to get over the hump.
The next price tier features a bunch of good teams in non-traditional hockey markets. The Lightning (+1000) have made three straight Cup Finals, and most of their roster will remain unchanged. However, key support pieces like Ondrej Palat and Nick Paul seem destined to cash in as free agents, and the Bolts don't exactly have the money to replace them adequately.
The Carolina Hurricanes (+1500) could be heading for real change as they try to reload following a disappointing playoff exit. The likes of Vincent Trocheck and Nino Niederreiter are set to become unrestricted free agents, and restricted free agents Tony DeAngelo, Martin Necas, and Ethan Bear are already being mentioned in trade rumors.
That group is followed on the oddsboard by a slew of quality sides with real question marks.
Will the Edmonton Oilers (+1700) free up enough money to properly support their superstars? Can the Calgary Flames (+2000) find a way to keep Johnny Gaudreau, Matthew Tkachuk, and Andrew Mangiapane in the fold long term? Are the Minnesota Wild (+2000) able to stay in the mix as contenders with Zach Parise's and Ryan Suter's buyouts chewing up so much money? How do the New York Rangers (+2000) sustain their success with little cap and an aging core? Can the Boston Bruins (+2700) stay afloat with a new head coach while dealing with long-term injuries to key players? There's a lot to be answered.
In the middle of the pack are a bunch of sides hoping that change will do them well. The New Jersey Devils (+5000) have a good young core and a lot of money to spend, but they must use it wisely. The Los Angeles Kings (+5000) are starting their ascension and need to add more scoring to take the next step. The Philadelphia Flyers (+5000) and Dallas Stars (+4000) have new head coaches, while the Vancouver Canucks (+5000) are remodeling under new management.
A mixture of young teams looking to take strides - like the Buffalo Sabres (+7500) and Detroit Red Wings (+7500) - and clubs expected to contend for the top spot in the Connor Bedard sweepstakes make up the bottom of the barrel on the oddsboard.
It'll be interesting to see how the market reacts to all the offseason moves over the next few weeks. We'll revisit these odds after free agency to examine how they've shifted.
Todd Cordell is a sports betting writer at theScore. Be sure to follow him on Twitter @ToddCordell.