The 2021 season enters the first week of May, and NHL betting is heating up on the ice as bettors take a longer look at Stanley Cup odds and try to figure out which team might hoist the trophy for the 2020-21 season.
It's been a bumpy ride at times, with a sometimes quirky schedule and teams playing around postponements. As of May 3, the Colorado Avalanche are the solo top choice in odds to win the Stanley Cup.
Let's look at the updated NHL odds to win the Stanley Cup.
Odds to win the Stanley Cup
Odds above are up-to-date and reflect the Covers Line, an average comprised of odds from multiple sportsbooks.
Compare NHL futures odds before betting to ensure you get the best number.
Stanley Cup futures action report
Biggest climb: Boston Bruins
When it comes to teams already near the top of the Stanley Cup odds board, there's not far to move up. But the Boston Bruins are 8-2 in their last 10 outings, through May 2, prompting PointsBet USA to trim their odds from +1,500 to the +1,100 sixth choice.
Bettors have certainly taken note of Boston, as well.
"The Bruins are in the top five for bet count to win the Stanley Cup," PointsBet sports analyst Mike Korn said. "Although it wouldn't be a huge loss for the book, the Bruins are definitely not one of the teams we'll be rooting for."
Heading into a May 3 game at New Jersey, the Bruins are 30-14-4-2 for 66 points, currently good for the fourth and final playoff spot from the East Division.
Furthest fall: Winnipeg Jets
This was a toss-up between two teams from north of the border, the Montreal Canadiens and Winnipeg Jets. But Winnipeg gets the nod based on recent form, which is not good. Entering their May 3 game at Ottawa, the Jets are on an 0-6 purge, and they've gotten hammered in that stretch, with every loss by two or more goals while being outscored by a cumulative 26-9.
"The Jets came into April at +2,500 and got as short as +2,200 in early April. Now they're out to +3,300," PointsBet's Korn said.
Winnipeg is 27-20-1-2 for 57 points, which still has them third in the North Division and safely in the playoff picture.
Team to watch: Pittsburgh Penguins
Several teams are running red-hot right now, including Vegas and Colorado. But don't sleep on Sidney Crosby and the Pittsburgh Penguins. Currently on a 6-1 surge, the Penguins are 15-4-0-1 over their last 20 outings, a pretty speedy way to rack up 31 points.
The Pens are now atop the East Division with a 34-15-2-1 record for 71 points, heading into a May 3 faceoff at Philadelphia.
"We moved the Penguins from +1,600 into +1,300, which is the lowest their odds have been all season," PointsBet's Korn said. "The Pens are in the middle of the pack in terms of bet count to win the Stanley Cup, and they would be a great result for the book."
Favorites to win the Stanley Cup
PointsBet USA has the Avalanche atop the Stanley Cup odds table at +425 as of May 3. The Avalanche had a three-game hiccup in late April, but more broadly have been absolutely torrid for nearly two months. Colorado is 20-4-1-1 in its last 26 games, racking up 42 points in the process to stand at 70 points for the season with a 33-12-3-1 record.
The Vegas Golden Knights are PointsBet's No. 2 choice at +500, and they've been as impressive as Colorado. The Knights are 11-1 in their last dozen games, winning the first 10 of those tilts, and are 36-12-0-2 on the season for 74 points,.
Past Stanley Cup winners
The Tampa Bay Lightning claimed Lord Stanley's grail last season in the COVID-19 bubble. The Lightning were favorites, or co-favorites with the Vegas Golden Knights, for most of the 2019-20 season.
Here are the last 11 winners of the Stanley Cup, their odds of winning just before the playoffs began (courtesy of Sports Odds History), and the team that lost in the Stanley Cup Finals.
|Season||Stanley Cup Winners||Odds before playoffs||Runner Up|
|2019-20||Tampa Bay Lightning||+650||Dallas Stars|
|2018-19||St. Louis Blues||+1,250||Boston Bruins|
|2017-18||Washington Capitals||+1,225||Vegas Golden Knights|
|2016-17||Pittsburgh Penguins||+770||Nashville Predators|
|2015-16||Pittsburgh Penguins||+650||San Jose Sharks|
|2014-15||Chicago Blackhawks||+800||Tampa Bay Lightning|
|2013-14||Los Angeles Kings||+1,400||New York Rangers|
|2012-13||Chicago Blackhawks||+400||Boston Bruins|
|2011-12||Los Angeles Kings||+2,200||New Jersey Devils|
|2010-11||Boston Bruins||+800||Vancouver Canucks|
|2009-10||Chicago Blackhawks||+450||Philadelphia Flyers|
Format for the 2020-21 NHL season
Due to COVID-19, the NHL is changing up the format of the schedule for the 2020-21 NHL season. The league has realigned the divisions – into North, West, Central and East – and each team will play a 56-game schedule of games only against other teams in their division.
The Top 4 teams in each division will qualify for the Stanley Cup Playoffs, where it will stay intradivisional as the first-place team in the division plays the fourth-place team, and No. 2 plays No. 3, and the winning teams face in the second round. The four teams that emerge as the champions of their respective divisions will play in the Stanley Cup semifinals, where each team is seeded by their points total in the regular season. Each round of the playoffs will be a best-of-seven series.
New divisions for the 2020-21 NHL season
|Calgary Flames||Anaheim Ducks||Carolina Hurricanes||Boston Bruins|
|Edmonton Oilers||Arizona Coyotes||Chicago Blackhawks||Buffalo Sabres|
|Montreal Canadiens||Colorado Avalanche||Columbus Blue Jackets||New Jersey Devils|
|Ottawa Senators||Los Angeles Kings||Dallas Stars||New York Islanders|
|Toronto Maple Leafs||Minnesota Wild||Detroit Red Wings||New York Rangers|
|Vancouver Canucks||San Jose Sharks||Florida Panthers||Philadelphia Flyers|
|Winnipeg Jets||St. Louis Blues||Nashville Predators||Pittsburgh Penguins|
|Vegas Golden Knights||Tampa Bay Lightning||Washington Capitals|
Understanding Stanley Cup odds
Sportsbooks will post odds to win the Stanley Cup before the season starts. These odds are constantly adjusted throughout the offseason as players get hurt, suspended or are traded. Once the regular season begins, title odds will change daily as teams win and lose games and as more players get hurt, suspended or traded. Sportsbooks will also adjust the NHL futures odds based on handle and liability to certain teams.
Stanley Cup odds will usually look like this:
- Colorado Avalanche +750
This means that on a $100 bet, you'll stand to win $750 if the Avs win the Stanley Cup. If it's close to the end of the regular season or even during the playoffs and the NHL has a very dominant team, you might see that a team is has a minus sign (-) ahead of its odds.
- Tampa Bay Lightning -120
This means that you would need to bet $120 to win $100 on a Lightning Stanley Cup win.
Above we have posted the American odds for the Stanley Cup. However, these are easy to convert to decimal odds or fractional odds with our odds converter tool.
Where can I bet on Stanley Cup odds?
You can bet on Stanley Cup odds and NHL futures at every online and casino sportsbook. Find ratings and reviews for the best sportsbooks for betting on NHL futures your area.