Daniel Wettstein previews the imminent NHL Bubble Season and picks out the best moneyline bets, player futures and team futures to consider before wagering.
Growing up, my Augusts were filled with the pounding of football pads and crack of the bat. A hidden gem of 2020 is that we not only get to enjoy these sights and sound, but also the pound of the rock on the hardwood as I have previewed here. And we get to hear the ping of the puck off the post! What a time to be alive right?!
Unlike what hockey usually fights with trying to be in the national news, they have thankfully been quiet on the Covid front. After a rough start, they reported 0 positive tests for the last week of training camps. This included over 4,000 tests on over 800 players. Hopefully this bodes well for the ability of the NHL to not only to restart, but finish their ‘19/’20 season.
We get to enjoy fast pace young lineups in the West with the Colorado Avalanche and Vancouver Canucks, who will be vying to steal the torch from the Old Guard in the Boston Bruins and Pittsburgh Penguins in the East. Will Ovechkin and the Capitals catch fire in what could be a wild tournament? Or will the Boston Bruins or Tampa Bay Lightning ride an absolutely stacked lineup all the way to the Stanley Cup Finals?
Well I am here to hopefully enhance that excitement and give you a look at some of the best betting action I can currently find. Below you will get a break down of what I believe to be some of the best bets I was able to find during a deep scouring of several sportsbooks. All lines/bets will be coming from DraftKings Sportsbook as they had the best odds and greatest repertoire.
The 2020 NHL Bubble Season kicks off on Saturday, August 1, 2020 with a 5-game slate. The first game that caught my eye was the Blackhawks vs. Oilers matchup with a Money Line set for the Blackhawks at +130 underdogs.
The sheer battle tested core of Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane, Duncan Keith, and Corey Crawford are already multiple time champions. This alone makes them one of the most dangerous teams in the bubble. The fact they open with such an enticing line is a bit surprising to be honest:
Another game that stands out is the Sunday, August 2, 2020 matchup of the Blue Jackets and Maple Leafs:
I know I already mentioned the Blackhawks as a dangerous team. The most dangerous just might be the youngest roster in the NHL as a whole, not just in the bubble. You might laugh at this because of the importance put on experience. This is where I get to point to the ultimate x-factor in this entire tournament: John Torterella.
He has proven more than once he can get more than the sum of his parts. You need only to look at his team sweeping the Stanley Cup Favorite Tampa Bay Lightning in the 2019 playoffs. Add in this Maple Leafs team as constructed is 0-3 in elimination series, you have the recipe for an upset.
If your one to shy away from risk, there is still some good lines on favorites like the Bruins to win the Eastern Conference at +300, or the Colorado Avalanche at +350 as you can see below. And DraftKings comes through again with pretty nice odds:
Now, if you want to go the Bruce Arians route and “Risk it for the biscuit”, the aforementioned Blue Jackets are at +3200.
Sticking with DraftKings there is some good value to be found in the #1 Seed props as well:
The Conn Smythe trophy is fully up for grabs as the odds will show. The “favorite” Nathan Mackinnon is at +1400. There is even some good Darkhorse odds for players like his teammate Mikko Rantanen at +2700:
The other player prop that enticed me was the Most Goals in the Qualifiers prop on DraftKings:
Auston Matthews ended the regular season 3rd in the NHL in goals scored with 47. Just one behind the leaders tied at 48 in David Pastrnak of the Bruins and Alex Ovechkin of the Capitals. Neither of these players qualifies for this prop as they will not be playing in any qualifying games. This leaves Matthews as the highest goal scorer in the qualifiers against possibly the worst goal-tending situation in the bubble.
This should be enough to get you primed and ready for another beginning of a shortened season by a major sports league. Stay with us and we will continue to bring you some of the best betting content on the web everyday leading up to and until the conclusion of the 2020 NHL season and we finally see that beautiful Stanley Cup lifted again.