Stanley Cup Playoffs 2023: Sportsbooks Predict A Hurricanes-Golden Knights Final

Updated: 12 Sport

Noah Strang provides a Stanley Cup odds update and zeroes in on the Conn Smythe race.

Stanley Cup Playoffs 2023: Sportsbooks Predict A Hurricanes-Golden Knights Final
Noah Strang Hockey Editor

Noah Strang is OLBG's Hockey Expert. He has written about Hockey for some of the Worlds top publications and worked as an accredited NHL media correspondent.

With Round Two of the Stanley Cup Playoffs having wrapped up on Monday night, we are now left with just four teams remaining as the Conference Finals are set to begin on Thursday. As such, each team still in contention has seen their odds shorten since we checked in last week. Let’s take a look at what the oddsmakers think about the final four. 

2023 Stanley Cup Champion

Team Moneyline Probability
Carolina Hurricanes +230 30.3%
Vegas Golden Knights +250 28.57%
Dallas Stars +280 26.32%
Florida Panthers +325 23.53%

NHL Stanley Cup Betting Guide: Preview, Statistics & Picks

NHL Stanley Cup Betting Guide: Preview, Statistics & Picks

Following their utter dismantling of the New Jersey Devils in five games, the Carolina Hurricanes now find themselves as Stanley Cup favorites heading into the Eastern Conference Finals at +230. Despite missing three of their best offensive players due to injury, Carolina has been dominating their opposition thus far by playing their style of puck-possession hockey and forcing the opposing teams to be the ones making adjustments.

In the second spot at +250 are the Vegas Golden Knights. Their lineup depth proved to be too much for the Edmonton Oilers to handle as they defeated them in six games. Vegas will now be participating in the Western Conference Finals for the fourth time in their team's six-year existence and are in search of their first Stanley Cup. 

Just behind them is their Western Conference Final opponents the Dallas Stars. Coming off of a nail-biter seven-game series against the Seattle Kraken, the Stars now sit at +280 to win it all. 

The Florida Panthers currently have the worst odds of winning the Cup out of the four teams remaining but are by no means a longshot. Sitting at +325, they are looking to become just the second eight-seed to ever win the Stanley Cup and the first since the LA Kings in 2012. 

Conn Smythe Odds

The Conn Smythe Trophy odds have also understandably shifted greatly following the elimination of four more teams from the playoffs. Most notably, former top-five stalwarts Leon Draisaitl and Connor McDavid are no longer listed with the Oilers falling short in round two. 

Newly appointed at the top of the list is Jack Eichel with +650 Conn Smythe odds. The Golden Knight’s offensive leader came alive in their second-round series with nine points including three in the pivotal game five that saw Vegas take a 3-2 series lead. He will have to continue his high level of point production in order for his team to keep moving forward. 

Following Eichel, both Matthew Tkachuk and Sebastian Aho are sitting at +700. Tkachuk is the spiritual leader of the Panthers and is also pacing them in points thus far with 16. Aho doesn’t have the gaudy point totals of his counterparts up here in the top three but his elite two-way play has been one of the keys to Carolina’s success thus far and will continue to be crucial as the postseason rolls on. 

A trio of goaltenders are sitting in fourth and fifth spots with Frederik Andersen at +800 and both Jake Oettinger and Sergei Bobrovsky tied at +1000. Each netminder will have to be at the top of their games to give their teams the best chance possible to advance to the Stanley Cup Finals. 

Joining Bobrovsky and Oettinger at +1000 are Roope Hintz and Mark Stone. Hintz has been one of the most dangerous offensive threats league-wide this playoffs with 19 points through two rounds while Mark Stone’s intelligent two-way play will be vital in Vegas’ attempt to shut down Hintz and his Dallas counterparts.

Series Winner Odds

As can be expected at this point in the playoffs, the odds for series winners across the board are quite tight with neither series having a substantial favorite or underdog. 

In the Eastern Conference Finals, the Carolina Hurricanes are slight favorites at -130. This leaves the Panthers as narrow underdogs at +110. Both teams have been extremely impressive in the playoffs, especially in their second-round matchups in which they both disposed of quality opponents in just five games. Because of this, the reason for Carolina’s slight edge likely stems from them being a far superior team to the Panthers in the regular season. 

These two teams have a similar play style to one another as they both forecheck aggressively and play the cycle and puck possession game to a high level. This leads me to believe the winner of the series will come down to who capitalizes on their chances and who receives the better play from their goaltender. While each has been playing exceptionally well, with Frederik Andersen only having given up 10 goals in his last six starts and the way the Hurricanes’ defense has been able to limit quality scoring chances in front of him, I’m leaning towards Carolina in seven. 

The Western Conference Finals feature a rematch of 2020 which saw the Stars defeat the Golden Knights in five games. This time around, Vegas holds a slight edge at the sportsbook with their odds set at -140 while the Stars are at +120. 

Both teams are balanced and deep both offensively and defensively, with three threatening forward lines and all three defensive pairings capable of playing 15+ minutes per night. Dallas, however, has a distinct advantage in net as Jake Oettinger has been one of the top goalies in the league over the past few years whereas Vegas is essentially down to their third-stringer in Adin Hill. Hill has played well ever since being thrust into the starter role in game three against Edmonton but Oettinger without a doubt projects to be the more reliable of the two. Couple this with what seems to be a slight edge in top-end talent with the likes of Jason Robertson, Miro Heiskanen, and Roope Hintz, and I think the Stars take the series in six games.

Most Goals in Series

Scoring goals in hockey is important. It may even be the most important part of the game as last time I checked, in order to win a game you must score more goals than your opponent. With that being said, let’s take a look at the odds for which player will score the most goals in each series. 

Starting with Vegas and Dallas, three players are all knotted up at +550 to lead the series in scoring. Jason Robertson and Roope Hintz of the Stars led the team in goals during the regular season at 46 and 37 respectively. However, thus far in the playoffs, Robertson has not been particularly prolific with Hintz having five goals and Robertson with just one. If they want to move on to the Cup Final both will likely need Robertson to regain his regular season form and find the back of the net consistently throughout the series. Jack Eichel potted 27 goals in 67 games in the regular season and has six goals in 11 games this playoffs. He will be relied on by Vegas to continue this production throughout this series and I believe is a better bet than his other two +550 constituents. 

In the East, Matthew Tkachuk is the favorite at +375 but has failed to score in his past six games. Sebastian Aho slots in behind him at +450 and has a respectable five goals in 11 playoff games. Up next at +500 is Carter Verhaeghe and he is where I would be placing my money. A 42-goal scorer in the regular season, Verhaeghe has scored five times this postseason. He seems to always come up big when his team needs him and with this series set to feature lots of tight games, I like him as a guy who rises to the occasion to find the twine more than any other player.

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