The Colorado Avalanche are favored to win the Stanley Cup, again, in 2023. The Tampa Bay Lightning, having lost the recent Final to Colorado after two Cups in succession, are second-best in this opening NHL futures market, albeit at double the odds. Rounding out the top four favorites are the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Florida Panthers.
Read below as we preview this initial Stanley Cup outrights markets, and weigh in on some of the early favorites on the board.
Odds To Win 2023 Stanley Cup
|Tampa Bay Lightning||+800|
|Toronto Maple Leafs||+900|
|Vegas Golden Knights||+1400|
|New York Rangers||+1600|
|St. Louis Blues||+2000|
|New York Islanders||+3300|
|Los Angeles Kings||+4500|
|Detroit Red Wings||+5500|
|Columbus Blue Jackets||+10000|
|San Jose Sharks||+10000|
|New Jersey Devils||+10000|
Colorado Avalanche (+400)
Before last season, the Avalanche were installed as the bookmakers’ favorites on the NHL odds board, and never wavered from the position. They finished second in the overall league standings (behind the Florida Panthers), and missed out on the Presidents’ Trophy, but rolled in the postseason.
Those that backed the Avalanche (at a bit more than 6-1) to win the 2022 Stanley Cup at the start of the season were handsomely rewarded this past Sunday. At this juncture, the betting online odds can be quite attractive.
Colorado edged the aforementioned two-time defending champion Tampa Bay Lightning in six games, hoisting the franchise’s third overall Stanley Cup. The deciding win came on Sunday night as the Avalanche edged Tampa Bay 2-1 at Amalie Arena.
Colorado went 16-4 in the postseason, and defenseman Cale Makar won the Conn Smythe Trophy as the most valuable player in the Stanley Cup playoffs by a unanimous vote.
— Colorado Avalanche (@Avalanche) June 29, 2022
The Avalanche are clear favorites as per BetUS, priced at +400. Next are the Lightning, double the odds at +800.
That kind of market edge might come across as a strong endorsement of Colorado’s chances, though repeat Cup champions are few and far between. The Lightning are one of just two teams to have pulled off the feat in the last two decades, the other being the Pittsburgh Penguins.
What Colorado does during the offseason needs attending. It will give NHL bettors a much clearer idea of their value to repeat.
General manager Joe Sakic has a couple of restricted agents, and nearly a dozen unrestricted ones, including Artturi Lehkonen, Nazem Kadri and goaltender Darcy Kuemper, to name a few.
Lehkonen did score the Stanley Cup-winning goal in Game 6, while Kadri scored the Game 4 overtime goal that gave the Avalanche a pivotal 3-1 lead in the series. Kuemper’s role needs no explanation. The netminder was outstanding between the posts, and without him the Avs might not have prevailed.
Tampa Bay Lightning (+800)
The Tampa Bay Lightning deserve to be the second choice, especially after three straight Stanley Cup Final appearances and two titles. There’s an intangible NHL betting cache.
The Lightning have been one of the best teams in recent season. That’s a credit to general manager Steve Yzerman, who now has to try and retain the cream of his crop.
The limitations of the salary cap dictate how effective Yzerman will be, along with possible trades and the draft. If he’s truly successful at keeping the core of this team intact, one likes the Lightning’s chances of another run.
Toronto Maple Leafs (+900)
The past two season saw the Toronto Maple Leafs crash out of the postseason in the first round. In 2020, it was the Montreal Canadiens stunning the Leafs with a come-from-behind series win. In 2021, the Lightning overcame the home-standing Leafs in the final game.
Toronto is the early third choice to win the 2023 Stanley Cup, but that probably should come with a warning notice. They’ve failed repeatedly since winning their last Cup in 1967, so until proven otherwise, wager with caution here.
Florida Panthers (+1000)
The Colorado Avalanche won the Presidents’ Trophy in the 2020-21, only to crash out in the conference semifinals to the Vegas Golden Knights in six games. Now, they’re Stanley Cup champions.
The Florida Panthers share some similarities to the 2020-21 Colorado Avalanche. As this season’s Presidents’ Trophy winners, finishing with the league’s best record, they too crashed out in the conference semifinal round, swept away by the Lightning in four games.
If the Panthers, with new coach Paul Maurice, learn from their own (and Colorado’s experiences) going into 2023, there’s some early value with this choice.