Check out our early picks for which teams have the best chance at winning the 2022 Stanley Cup.
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The NHL just wrapped up its 2020-21 campaign with the Tampa Bay Lightning earning their second straight Stanley Cup championship. And while the offseason is barely underway, it's already time to start thinking about next year. So, we've got 2022 Stanley Cup betting odds and predictions hot off the presses and ready for you to consume.
Like always, let's first take a look at the early Stanley Cup betting lines, which come from BetOnline:
|2022 Stanley Cup Winner|
|Vegas Golden Knights||+650|
|Tampa Bay Lightning||+700|
|Toronto Maple Leafs||+1400|
|New York Islanders||+2000|
|New York Rangers||+2200|
|St. Louis Blues||+2800|
|Los Angeles Kings||+7000|
|San Jose Sharks||+8000|
|Columbus Blue Jackets||+10000|
|Detroit Red Wings||+10000|
|New Jersey Devils||+10000|
Don't forget to continue rechecking BetOnline and other top online sportsbooks to confirm these NHL odds. Offseason lines always move frequently and are subject to starker shifts.
2022 NHL Stanley Cup Predictions
One of the many questions we get asked when talking about NHL futures that release this far in advance is whether they're even worth the gamble. After all, though we're in for another shorter offseason, we're still roughly 90 days away from the start of 2021-22.
At this writing specifically, teams have yet to go through the regular draft, the Seattle Kraken expansion draft or general free agency. A lot about the NHL's power structure will change between now and the start of the season.
But that's part of the appeal. With the exception of the heaviest favorites. you're getting bargains on many teams because oddsmakers are caking in the uncertainty of the offseason—including potential trades. So while it's always smart to wait on investing in teams you think might undergo roster overhauls, if there's a team you don't expect to change all that much, you have the opportunity to snag a more lucrative moneyline entry.
Now, let's tackle all the biggest questions facing 2022 Stanley Cup contenders. We will, as usual, finish up with our official Stanley Cup predictions.
Can The Tampa Bay Lightning Three-Peat?
After becoming just the second team in the NHL's salary cap era to win back-to-back titles, the Lightning were always going to get serious Stanley Cup consideration. You'll also notice that, at +700, they're not the favorites. And that's by design.
The NHL hasn't seen a three-peat since the Montreal Canadiens and New York Islanders, respectively, ended the 1970s and began the 1980s by winning four straight Stanley Cups apiece. But the league was different then. It had fewer teams, and there is far more parity—i.e. the potential for upsets—today.
Beyond that, the Lightning are in a tight spot. They enter the offseason as the only team over the cap, and have several key unrestricted free agents who are almost locks to sign with different teams.
Combine this relative inflexibility with a dearth of trade assets, and you get a team that should remain in next year's playoff hunt but will be nowhere near as well-positioned to win another Stanley Cup.
Are The New York Islanders A Stanley Cup Dark Horse?
Nobody saw the Islanders (+2000) making it all the way to the postseason semifinals or coming within two victories of a Stanley Cup appearance. They weren't considered deep enough on the offensive side.
That limitation indeed came back to bite them when matching up with the Lightning. But they also showed the ability to pick up their offense a notch in high-pressure situations.
With talented young players galore, plenty of flexibility this summer, and a defense that should once again rank among the five stingiest in the league, they deserve to be looped among quasi-favorites.
Is It Time To Abandon The Edmonton Oilers?
The Edmonton Oilers (+2500) seduce a ton of bettors every year. How could they not?
Few teams throughout history have a perennial MVP candidate on their roster, and the Oilers somehow have two, in Leon Draisaitl and Conor McDavid. And yet, like clockwork every year, they wind up being a disappointment.
Granted, having two top-five MVP candidates makes them an intriguing dark horse. But given how they flamed out of the playoffs, you'll want to see them beef up their defense before making any substantive investments.
2022 Stanley Cup Prediction
Intrigue abounds up and down the betting odds board—particularly if you eliminate the possibility of a three-beat from Tampa Bay.
The Vegas Golden Knights (+650) should be right back in the fold as one of the NHL's premier two-way teams. The Colorado Avalanche (+500) remain tantalizing for that same reason, but their core is more fragile compared to some of their peers. This year might've been their last opportunity to win it all.
Some have the Pittsburgh Penguins (+2500) ticketed for a rebuild, but their league-best offense from this season should remain intact. The Boston Bruins (+1200) are somewhat overvalued, but injecting some offense into their top-five defense would go a long way.
Ultimately, we're drawn to the Toronto Maple Leafs (+1400). They provide the right mix of value and sustainability, and it can be argued that their roster underachieved despite placing in the top eight of both goals scored and goals allowed. We believe they'll be even scarier next year.
OSB 2022 Stanley Cup Prediction: Maple Leafs (+1400)
Check out this list of the best online sportsbooks so you can decide which one to use for all your NHL betting: