Canada's favorite league, NHL, is limping through the season. Many games have been postponed, many others have been "poor" due to a litany of players being out, but the season is rolling on. Still, we've seen enough games to get an idea of how you should bet NHL 2022 Stanley Cup futures — and we're sharing all that for free in this article!
Now is a good time to revisit championship futures anyway. The NHL All-Star Game is a few short weeks away, which effectively acts like a mid-season check-in point for teams, players, AND bettors alike. Speaking which, let's see how the best Canada sportsbooks are currently pegging Stanley Cup futures. These teams are most favored to win it right now:
2022 Stanley Cup Betting Picks
The Stanley Cup playoffs are notoriously unpredictable. Just two years ago, the team that set the all-time record for wins in a single season (the Lightning with 62 victories) was swept out of the first round of the playoffs. Swept! That unpredictability is why the current betting odds above are so wide-open. Therefore, we're not going to make one 2022 Stanley Cup betting pick. No, we're going to make several.
You just have to in this sport where the best team doesn't necessarily win the championship. Making multiple bets is how you practice risk management. The risk from not only a stunning postseason upset but the risk from an untimely COVID infection which becomes a real possibility this year. Here are the three teams we believe are most worthy of a futures bet right now:
Tampa Bay Lightning
Surprise, surprise, we're picking the two-time reigning Stanley Cup champions to hit the three-peat — which hasn't been accomplished in four decades. So while history isn't on the Lightning's side, we don't care. You don't go back-to-back (right after the aforementioned first-round sweep no less) without having championship DNA. This team is grizzled and they've been there, done that.
You can't say the same about fellow Eastern Conference title contenders like the Panthers and Maple Leafs, neither of which have won diddly squat (in the postseason) in decades. Adversity is inevitably going to strike down the stretch and we have all the confidence in the world that Tampa's core of players — Nikita Kucherov, Steven Stamkos, and Brayden Point — can overcome it to raise another title. Bet on the reigning champs with confidence here!
Alright, alright, we know, in the paragraph above, we said the Panthers aren't experienced (they're not) but that doesn't mean they're not worth a "flyer" bet here. They've been the best team so far in the season and are tied with the Lightning with the most points (53) in the entire league. Much of that success has come from the offensive front, where they rank second league-wide in goals scored.
But here's another reason why we're picking Florida to run the table: they're hardened from last year's playoff loss — a first-round exit at the hands of the Lightning. Just like Tampa rebounded from its own first-round defeat to claim the next two Stanley Cups, we believe the Panthers might be the better cause of that prior disappointment.
We really believe the Eastern Conference goes through the state of Florida, whether that's the Panthers or Lightning. Rather than fiddle about which of the two is slightly better, we'll just place bets on both and "let the chips fall where they may."
Since our two previous picks resided in the East, it only makes sense our third and final choice is from the Western Conference. While Colorado might have the best betting line to win, our choice is instead Las Vegas. The rationale behind that is similar to what we previously said about the Lightning: the Knights aren't strangers to the postseason or the disappointment that comes with falling short during it.
Starting with the Golden Knights' entrance into the NHL in 2016, they've been in "the thick" of the Stanley Cup year in, year out — but all ended in playoff disappointment. We like the chances of 2022 NOT being a repeat story. With 48 points, Vegas currently has the second-most out West (behind Nashville only). They're also third in scoring, which makes them well-suited for a deep playoff run. If you're going to wager with one team in the West, make sure it's the Golden Knights.
How To Bet On NHL Futures?
Alright, ready to bet on NHL futures like the ones above? Or perhaps divisional title futures? Or individual player futures? Welp, any one of those bets is available right now at one of the Canadian books listed underneath. The table has up-to-date reviews on these betting sites, as well as details about current sportsbook bonuses available.
Speaking of the latter, these bonuses aren't "peanuts" either. No, the deals can top out at hundreds of dollars in free play — which you can use to bet on NHL futures. If you're not one to leave money on the table, then hit one of the "get bonused" buttons below to begin the free-play redemption process.