Stanley Cup Odds – Penguins should repeat as NHL champs

NHL OddsStanley Cup odds are here as the NHL will drop the puck on playoff time on Wednesday, and Washington and San Jose are the favorites to meet in the finals. However, neither of these teams will make it that far.

Eastern Conference

The Penguins are listed with NHL odds of +500 to repeat as Stanley Cup champions, and Sidney Crosby will again lead his team into battle. The key for the Penguins, however, is Evgeni Malkin, who has been inconsistent all season while dealing with injuries, but he’s healthy now. Washington is actually the favorite at +200, but even with all of their offensive firepower, led by Alex Ovechkin, Alex Semin, Nicklas Backstrom and Mike Green on the blue line, the Capitals have questionable goaltending. New Jersey and Buffalo are rated at +1000 and +1200, respectively, but they’ll need goaltenders Martin Brodeur and Ryan Miller to stand on their heads.

Western Conference

San Jose and Chicago are both tied at +500 in your sportsbook to represent the West, but both have question marks. The Sharks are perennial underachievers, and the Blackhawks have shaky goaltending, but they could get Brian Campbell back for the playoffs. You can never count out Detroit at +600, and even though the Red Wings got off to a rough start, they came on after the Olympic break, and their experience of two straight appearances in the Stanley Cup finals (including a win two years ago) should help them out. However, the pick here is Vancouver at +1000, as they have the NHL’s leading scorer in Henrik Sedin, while brother Daniel and Alex Burrows round out one of the top lines in the league. All eyes will be on Roberto Luongo, who backstopped Canada to the gold medal in his home building, and that should give him some confidence as the Canucks goaltender had a reputation of shutting down in big games (see last year’s playoff series against Chicago for proof).

Stanley Cup Finals

Here, the edge has to go to the Penguins with their experience of last year’s win over Detroit. Marc-Andre Fleury has been solid in goal for the Penguins, and he was the No.3 goalie on the Canadian squad behind Luongo and Brodeur, so that must have been a good experience. The Penguins are deeper than the Canucks, and if you can slow down the Sedin-Sedin-Burrows line, you have a good chance at stopping the Canucks. Take the Penguins in your sports betting picks for the NHL playoffs.

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