With the Boston Bruins, Colorado Avalanche, Toronto Maple Leafs, Tampa Bay Lightning, Edmonton Oilers, and New York Rangers all being eliminated from the Stanley Cup Playoffs two new teams have emerged as the favorites to the win Stanley Cup in a wild and wacky year in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
Well, the Stanley Cup will not return to Canada as many bettors and oddsmakers thought it would. There was a really good chance Canada would get its first Stanley Cup in 30 years. But that did not happen. Instead, the Stanley Cup Playoffs continue to show anything is possible outside. Except for two familiar teams.
With the heavy favorites from the Eastern and Western Conferences now gone, the field is wide open as a new Stanley Cup Champion will be crowned. That is reflected on the oddsmakers board. As the Florida Panthers and Seattle Kraken have shown anything can happen once you get in the dance.
2023 Stanley Cup Odds (via Covers.com)
Vegas Golden Knights
Carolina Hurricanes (+225)
The Hurricanes Carolina have emerged as the favorites to win the Stanley Cup. This could be a good or a bad thing. We have seen so many favorites go down in the playoffs. However, the way Carolina is playing they have a legit shot to lift the Stanley Cup for the first time since 2006. If the Hurricanes can get passed the Florida Panthers, it would be their third trip to the Stanley Cup Final. Head coach Rod Brind’Amour has got his team cooking on all cylinders. Carolina plays a structured defensive game and takes advantage of turnovers and timely goal-scoring. The way they manhandled the New Jersey Devils shows how good this team can really be. From the start of the season, Carolina is always a threat to win.
Vegas Golden Knights (+250)
Then there are the Golden Knights. Vegas is making its fourth trip to the Western Conference in six seasons. The franchise is only around for six seasons. Just think about that for a minute. However, there is Vegas continues to fly under the radar as the Pacific Division champions. They got no respect against the Edmonton Oilers, but they emerged victorious. If you got them at +650 in the last round, your bet is looking good. That was the number to lock them in at as the Golden Knights are the second favorite to win the Stanley Cup now. Like Carolina, Vegas is a deep team that can play good defence and has great goaltending. Not to mention they are getting timely goal-scoring not only from their top stars but their depth as well. Would anyone be shocked if Vegas gets back to the Stanley Cup Final?
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Dallas Stars (+310)
The Dallas Stars got through the Seattle Kraken in seven games in Round 2 of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. This group minus a couple of players went to the Stanley Cup Final back in 2020. Standing in their way in the Western Conference will be a familiar face in the Vegas Golden Knights. Vegas is a favorite in the series and one of the favourites to win the Stanley Cup. However, like with Vegas in the last round, Dallas had better value, but they are the sneaky good play here, especially with Pete DeBoer as bench boss and what he does in the first year coaching a new team.
Florida Panthers (+350)
The Florida Panthers have value at +350, but there was more value on them in the last round and even when the playoffs begin to win the Stanley Cup. Florida will be in tough against the Carolina Hurricanes. The Panthers are looking to go back to the Stanley Cup Final for the first time since 1996. And why not them especially with their goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky playing so well? Even though road teams are doing well in the playoffs, Carolina is a tough place to play, Florida needs a split if they want a chance to go advance.
Round 3 of the Stanley Cup Playoffs gets underway Thursday, May 18th.
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