NHL All-Star Game 2023 Skills Competition Odds and Predictions: Here for Hayes (and Other Underdogs too)

Handicapping the NHL All-Star Game Skills Competition is no easy task, but it does make for some very enticing underdog values. We've keyed in on the three biggest events of evening, with our best bet for each — none of which are the favorite.

Last Updated: Feb 3, 2023 11:46 AM ET Read Time: 4 min
Kevin Hayes Philadelphia Flyers NHL
Photo By - USA TODAY Sports

When DraftKings is the main sponsor of the NHL All-Star Skills competition... you know we’re getting markets to bet on.

There will be seven total events in this year's event but I’ll be looking at three of the usuals (hardest shot, fastest skater, and accuracy) as these markets have the least amount of variance — but be fully aware that anything can go in these competitions so don’t bet the farm. 

The weekend may be meaningless for some, but players winning their competition can earn $30,000 per event and although the league is adding two new events, the main three are still there for bettors to dig into. 

Last year, we saw the NHL pre-record the outdoor events but this move was so secretive that sportsbooks still took wagers on the already-completed events... later voiding all of those bets (crushing those bettors who thought they had the best edge ever).

The books will be paying a little more attention this year as the newly-added ‘Splash Shot’ will be recorded on Thursday before being broadcast on Friday. There likely won’t be any markets there, but the key-three events will certainly draw a decent handle and the hardest shot, fastest skater, and accuracy events are the best competitions for bettors to look at.

Bet NHL All-Star Game bonuses

Looking to bet on the NHL All-Star Game? Here are two of the best bonuses* available:

A) New users at FanDuel can get a no-sweat first bet of up to $3,000! Sign Up Now

B) New users at DraftKings can bet $5 and get $200 in bonus bets! Sign Up Now

*Eligible USA locations only. Also, check out our full list of best sportsbook promotions for 2023.
21+. Gambling Problem? Call 1-800-GAMBLER

Hardest shot competition odds and prediction

Odds to win hardest shot competition

Player Team Odds
Capitals Alex Ovechkin Metropolitan +300
Sabres Rasmus Dahlin Atlantic +350
Blackhawks Seth Jones Central +380
Canucks Elias Pettersson Pacific +400
Jets Josh Morrissey Central +400

Odds courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook as of February 3, 2023.

Hardest shot competition analysis

The hardest shot competition will give players two separate shots with their fastest shot being counted.

That’s it. Two shots each.

No bracket. Just clappers. 

Outside of an Alex Ovechkin win in 2018, this has been a competition dominated by defensemen, but this year it’s wide open. None of the previous three winners will be attending the festivities, making this a wide-open field with Ovie being the betting favorite just because he won in 2018 — but his 101.3 mph shot has been the slowest winning shot since 2007.

Of those five competitors, Seth Jones has competed in the event three separate times, finishing last in 2020 (98.8 mph), last in 2019 (95.5 mph), and third in 2017 (98.1). He's a pass. 

Pettersson is the sneaky play here at +400. He's young and likely cares more than the veterans who could possibly be burning the midnight oil in Florida (looking at you, Ovie). He also recorded a 102.4 mph bomb in the 2020 competition that surprised many. He's now two years older, stronger, and more experienced. Of all the skaters in this, he has the fastest-recorded shot and that is enough for me to bite at 4/1.

Best bet: Elias Pettersson (+400)

Recent hardest shot competition winners

Year Winner (mph) Runner-up (mph)
2022 Lightning Victor Hedman (103.2) Islanders Adam Pelech (102.2)
2020 Canadiens Shea Weber (106.5) Capitals John Carlson (104.5)
2019 Capitals John Carlson (102.8) Sharks Brent Burns (100.6)
2018 Capitals Alex Ovechkin (101.3) Predators P.K. Subban (98.7)
2017 Canadiens Shea Weber (102.8) Jets Patrik Laine (101.7)

Shot accuracy competition odds and prediction

Odds to win shot accuracy competition

Player Team Odds
Oilers Connor McDavid Pacific +500
Oilers Leon Draisaitl Pacific +600
Devils Jack Hughes Metropolitan +600
Lightning Nikita Kucherov Atlantic +650
Panthers Alex Barkov Atlantic +700
Rangers Artemi Panarin Metropolitan +700
Blues Vladimir Tarasenko Central +900
Flames Nazem Kadri Pacific +900
Flyers Kevin Hayes Metropolitan +1100
Islanders Brock Nelson Metropolitan +1100

Odds courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook as of February 3, 2023.

Shot accuracy competition analysis

If any of the major competitions were truly random, I think it's the accuracy shooting. Skaters just need to hit four targets and any of these NHL players is capable of going 4-for-4.

Yes, some big names have won the event, but also some fringe All-Stars and some defensemen have claimed victory. This is by far the hardest event to handicap and with the biggest field, makes it even more difficult.

We simply can't just look at active shooting percentages and find an edge, but with McDavid and Draisaitl being the favorites and having the best shooting percentages in the group — at an absurd 19.6% on the season — maybe that's where the books got their numbers.

I'm looking at this more subjectively and love the story of Kevin Hayes... and his price. I can't do the story justice and it's an absolute must-read.

Everyone should be pulling for the long-shot pick who has just as good a chance to win this event as anyone else in the field.

Best bet: Kevin Hayes (+1,100)

Recent shot accuracy competition winners

Year Winner (time) Runner-up (time)
2022 Hurricanes Sebastian Aho (10.937) Penguins Jake Guentzel (12.017)
2020 Hurricanes Jaccob Slavin (9.505) Oilers Leon Draisaitl (10.257)
2019 Bruins David Pastrnak (11.309) Penguins Kris Letang (12.683)
2018 Canucks Brock Boeser (11.136) Devils Brian Boyle (11.626)
2017 Penguins Sidney Crosby (10.73) Maple Leafs Auston Matthews (12.280)

Fastest skater competition odds and prediction

Odds to win fastest skater competition

Player Team Odds
Red Wings Dylan Larkin Atlantic +250
Golden Knights Chandler Stephenson Pacific +300
Avalanche Cale Makar Central +300
Wild Kirill Kaprizov Central +500
Hurricanes Andrei Svechnikov Metropolitan +700

Odds courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook as of February 3, 2023.

Fastest skater competition analysis

This is likely the competition that means more to the individual skaters. Jordan Kyrou won last year and made comments that he didn’t partake in the previous evening’s festivities because he wanted to win the event, which is always a factor when betting on ASG competitions.

Players who got into some extracurriculars last night likely won’t fare well in this competition — it's not something every skater wants to do and that's why we saw McDavid bow out this year.

It makes a lot of sense that Dylan Larkin is the favorite with McDavid watching: He posted a 13.172 in 2016 the fastest recorded time over the last six competitions and the third-fastest speed since the event began in 1990. But then he also finished seventh last year with a time of 14.116. Perhaps Larkin isn't too excited to win this event a second time.

That could make a case for Chandler Stephenson who is participating in his first All-Star game and can fly. He's been clocked at nearly 23 mph during a game, which is just below McDavid's fastest recorded speed in-game by the International Ice Hockey Federation at the 2019 World Ice Hockey Championships.

Cale Makar had a time of 13.834 last season and is also in the mix. This looks like a decent spot to fade the favorite, who is at the top (most likely) because of his performance more than half a decade ago.

Best bet: Chandler Stephenson (+300)

Recent fastest skater competition winners

Year Winner (time) Runner-up (time)
2022 Blues Jordan Kyrou (13.550) Kings Adrian Kempe (13.585)
2020 Islanders Mathew Barzal (13.175) Oilers Connor McDavid (13.215)
2019 Oilers Connor McDavid (13.378) Sabres Jack Eichel (13.582)
2018 Oilers Connor McDavid (13.454) Lightning Brayden Point (13.579)
2017 Oilers Connor McDavid (13.310) Lightning Nikita Kucherov (13.160)

Pages related to this topic

Popular Content

Legal Canadian sports betting

Best Canadian betting sites Ontario sports betting
Covers 25 Years Logo Established in 1995,
Covers is the world
leader in sports
betting information.
Covers is verified safe by: Evalon Logo GPWA Logo GDPR Logo GeoTrust Logo Evalon Logo