The 82-game hockey season is now over a quarter of the way complete, and there are several NHL Stanley Cup 2017 contenders that have emerged. As of right now, the defending champions, the Pittsburgh Penguins, are still considered the team to beat, but they have strong competition to watch out for. The season is young, and Pittsburgh will try to position themselves for a shot at a three-peat for the Cup. Teams including the Edmonton Oilers, Washington Capitals, and Chicago Blackhawks might have the potential to take down Pittsburgh at some point in the postseason. However, there are three other NHL teams leading the latest odds to win it all.
According to the latest NHL Stanley Cup odds from the Odds Shark NHL futures, the Pittsburgh Penguins started as the top contenders at most sportsbooks. After first opening as +850 favorites to win it all, the multiple-time NHL champions are now priced at +1,200 to +1,400 at various books and aren’t odds-on-favorite to repeat as champs. As of right now, Pittsburgh is 15-10 and considered in the running for an Eastern Conference Wild Card spot along with the Washington Capitals, if the playoffs began today. Currently, the Penguins are on a four-game winning streak ahead of an in an interesting clash on Tuesday night with the New York Rangers. Depending on where one looks, the Penguins are now tied with several other teams for the third-best odds to win it all this postseason.
So who are the strongest contenders to become the next Stanley Cup champions? The two best records right now in the NHL standings belong to the Tampa Bay Lightning (18-6) and the Winnipeg Jets (17-6). However, the latest odds leaders, according to Vegas Insider, are the St. Louis Blues and the Tampa Bay Lightning. Both teams are listed as 8 to 1 favorites on the future odds. At Odds Shark, Tampa Bay has +700 to +800 as the current odds on favorites to win the Stanley Cup at most sportsbooks.
Tampa Bay ranks among the top four in both goals scored and allowed, making them a serious threat. They’re also first in power play percentage and rank eighth in penalty kill percentage (82.6). St. Louis also ranks in the top seven in both goals scored (3.2 per game) and allowed (2.7 per game) as they sit in third-place in the central division at the moment. They’re not far behind Nashville and Winnipeg for the division lead, though.
The latest future odds from Vegas Insider below give a look at which NHL teams rank amongst the top contenders right now.
Stanley Cup 2017-18 Contenders
- St. Louis Blues 8/1
- Tampa Bay Lightning 8/1
- Toronto Maple Leafs 10/1
- Columbus Blue Jackets 14/1
- Nashville Predators 14/1
- Pittsburgh Penguins 14/1
- Chicago Blackhawks 16/1
- Los Angeles Kings 16/1
- Washington Capitals 16/1
Several other teams are hovering near the top for the latest future odds to capture the Stanley Cup title. As seen in Vegas Insider’s listing above, the Toronto Maple Leafs are 10 to 1 behind Tampa Bay. The reigning champions find themselves tied with the Nashville Predators and Columbus Blue Jackets with 14 to 1 odds to win it all. Just behind those teams are the Chicago Blackhawks, Los Angeles Kings, and Washington Capitals, all of whom seem like legitimate threats to make a serious postseason run.
The season’s still young with plenty of hockey left to play. With that in mind, any team could really start to surge, including the Pittsburgh Penguins as they try to make NHL history and capture a third-straight Stanley Cup Championship.