No surprises as Tampa Bay Lightning remain the favorite to be lifting the Stanley Cup; if at all it will be only for the second time in the history of the franchise. Lightning’s performance has been astounding but nothing surprising as they are cruising towards an impressive win and may even go on to creating history by annihilating the NHL’s single-season record for points – 132 credited to the 1976-77 Montreal Canadiens. As to who would lift the Stanley Cup this year, the verdict is almost guaranteed with the Tampa Bay Lightning, the +220 current hot favorite.
It is seemingly unfair that The Atlantic Division hosts the Lightning, red-hot Boston Bruins (+900) and Toronto Maple Leafs (+1000) as they are the top favorites, however, with the NHL’s playoff structure only one will be reaching to the finals.
With Tampa leading the east, with the west, on the other hand, it is still unclear. Detroit Red Wings forward Gustav Nyquist was taken by San Jose Sharks (+1000) who despite being on a golden spree of breaking his all-time career high in terms of points fails to score for the Sharks. Now they have a total of eight players with Brent Burns and Erik Karlsson with a minimum of 45 to count the least.
Vegas Golden Knights (+1400), the defending champions had to charge it up by mustering some skills for a total offense and which they managed by trading Mark Stone, Ottawa’s star player. Stone remains in the top 20 in the club of points per game highest scorer for the past two seasons consecutively. While he was about to be an unrestricted free agent, the knights immediately contacted him for a hefty extension.
Nashville Predators (+1200), the 2018 President Trophy winner, have increased their chances of winning their first Stanley Cup by adding start forwards Mikael Granlund and Wayne Simmonds from Minnesota Wild and Philadelphia Flyers. Though Nashville may boast of the top goaltending, they have just one of the worst power play in the NHL. However, that may become just history; for now, they have added Granlund and Simmonds – hopes are high for all the right reasons.
Losing to Golden Knights last year in the Western Conference final The Winnipeg Jets (+1200) have improved their chances by getting Kevin Hayes, the New York Rangers Forward on board.