There is nothing like the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Above all the NHL boasts the best postseason in pro sports. First, among the reasons why is the unpredictability. Unlike the NBA, teams that make the Stanley Cup Final are difficult to predict. Big favorites are not a certainty for success with the NHL odds. Specifically, the Golden Knights, Avalanche, Blues, Stars, and Oilers are all believable contestants. Play will start with the five through 12 seeds in Edmonton. In turn best of five preliminary series mark the return. Winners will move on to meet the top four teams.
2020 NHL Western Conference Championship Odds
|Vegas Golden Knights||+300|
|St. Louis Blues||+400|
2020 NHL Western Conference Championship Odds Overview
Starting with the Golden Knights is a unique influence. Vegas money with two highly successful seasons has made this a marquee franchise. Colorado is highly talented and young. Of course, the Blues will get plenty of sportsbook handle as defending champions. Most of all these three teams bring considerable public perception.
Western Conference Seedings and Matchups
First Round Byes: 1-St. Louis Blues, 2-Colorado Avalanche, 3-Vegas Golden Knights, 4-Dallas Stars
5-Edmonton Oilers (-160) vs. 12-Chicago Blackhawks (+140)
Compared to any other team the Oilers boast the top weapon in hockey. Connor McDavid is the NHL’s best player. Edmonton has shown considerable improvement in Dave Tippett’s first year as head coach. In comparison, the Blackhawks have no business being in the playoffs. Save for the unique circumstances of 2020.
6-Nashville Predators (-140) vs. 11-Arizona Coyotes (+120)
Initially, the Coyotes were in prime playoff position. Arizona’s lack of goal scoring eventually caught up with them. Nashville has shown significant offensive improvement. Counter to that has been alarming erosion of defensive production. The end result is that this series looks like the most difficult handicap of the first round.
7-Vancouver Canucks (-130) vs. 10-Minnesota Wild (+110)
Minnesota was floundering before Dean Evason took over as head coach. As a result, the Wild were one of the NHL’s top teams before the coronavirus shutdown. Questions remain about Minnesota’s viability due to depth and age. By contrast the Canucks were fading badly before play stopped. Strong play early in the season was proven unsustainable.
8-Calgary Flames (-120) vs. 9-Winnipeg Jets (+100)
To be exact this matchup is seen as the best of the first round. Calgary is a team that exceeded its metrics. To illuminate the Flames consistently overcome their own shortcomings. Winnipeg was a disappointment for most of the season. By reason of high expectations were the Jets a frustrating team for gamblers. With a four-month break, every team has a new season within a season. It follows that the Jets are still considered a prominent dark horse candidate.
SBG 2020 Western Conference Championship Free Picks
On this occasion, the Oilers should dominate the NHL odds against the discombobulated Blackhawks. Minnesota was in better form than the exposed Canucks. Consistent with that is a Flames team that should meet its demise against deeper Winnipeg. As for Nashville and Arizona, handicappers may flip a coin.
SBG 2020 Western Conference Championship Best Bets: Edmonton Oilers. Minnesota Wild, Winnipeg Jets