Seems like no sport can match Stanley Cup Playoff Odds action. The intensity and parity of teams makes for unrivaled competition. From the Eastern Conference are the two-time defending champion Pittsburgh Penguins. Their path to a three-peat is looking quite difficult. One team that could upend the Penguins is Tampa Bay. Lighting backers will get a club that is loaded and young. Boston emerged as a surprise power this year. Toronto is the proverbial young team on the rise. And Alex Ovechkin and Washington are desperate to erase past playoff heartbreak. The playoffs begin on Wednesday.
2018 Stanley Cup Playoff Odds
Date and Time: Stanley Cup Playoffs begin April 11, 2018
Location: Check Schedules
NHL Betting Online Odds at SBG: Click here!
2018 Stanley Cup Playoffs TV Coverage: Check Listings
Each series with the Stanley Cup Playoff Odds is best of seven. There are four first round series in the Eastern Conference. Boston and Tampa Bay opened at 11/4 to win the Eastern Conference. At 15/4 is Pittsburgh. Washington’s has a price of 9/2. Toronto entices at 5/1. Columbus could be a 12/1 bargain. Philadelphia is 13/1. New Jersey is the longshot with 15.1 odds.
Tampa Bay Lightning (54-34-5) vs. New Jersey Devils (44-29-9)
Although Tampa Bay missed the playoffs last year it was a sportsbook mirage. Few teams are as talented as the Lightning. Jon Cooper is also one of the brightest coaches in the game. No team scored more goals than the Lightning. Right wing Nikita Kucherov led with 39 goals and 61 assists. Goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy has a save percentage of .920 with eight shutouts. Although an eight seed New Jersey boasts potential MVP winner Taylor Hall. But the Devils are clearly outclassed in this one.
Boston Bruins (50-20-12) vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (49-26-7)
With 2016 top draft pick Auston Matthews Toronto is an emerging power. Mike Babcock gives the Maple Leafs a coaching edge in almost every game. Boston was one of the most complete teams in the NHL this year. But they ended the season regular season poorly. Of any series in the East this one reeks of potential upset.
Washington Capitals (49-26-7) vs. Columbus Blue Jackets (45-30-7)
Each year Washington enters spring as a top Stanley Cup Playoff Odds favorite. Yet each playoff quest ends in failure. Alex Ovechkin is a future Hall of Famer but lacks a Stanley Cup title. He was in top form with 49 goals this year. Father time is marching on the Great Eight. Pressure will be high. Columbus is a plucky team that cannot keep up offensively vs. the Capitals.
Pittsburgh Penguins (47-29-6) vs. Philadelphia Flyers (42-26-14)
With a core of star players led by Sidney Crosby Pittsburgh remains Stanley Cup material. But goaltender Matt Murray was sluggish this year. Penguin observers say he has slipped from his dominance of the past two years. Philadelphia has just slightly above metrics. Against the Flyers the Pittsburgh lineup is overwhelming and deeper. Neither team was dominant on the back end this season.
2018 Stanley Cup Playoff Odds Picks
Gamblers looking for a dark horse should consider Toronto. The Maple Leafs boast good secondary scoring. And goaltender Frederik Andersen is often overlooked. Tampa Bay looks like a terrific first round pick. However, they won’t be cheap.
NHL Betting Online Picks: Tampa Bay, Toronto, Washington and Pittsburgh
Check out a preview of the Bruins vs. Maple Leafs series!