2021-2022 NHL Season Picks: Best Bets for Every Division Winner

Eric Uribe
By , Updated on: Sep 4, 2022 08:00 PM
2021-2022 NHL Season Picks: Best Bets for Every Division Winner

The start of the NHL regular season is always a good chance to take stock of the league's betting futures. Oftentimes, this refers to reviewing the Stanley Cup picture. And we'll eventually do that. Right now, though, our latest 2021-22 NHL season picks are going to focus on our best bets for every division winner.

Last season, operating at a different capacity amid the coronavirus pandemic, the NHL re-ordered their teams into brand new divisions. This year, however, they're following a four-division structure, with eight squads appearing in each region.

To start us off, here's a look at the NHL betting odds for the Metropolitan Division, courtesy of BetOnline:

New York Islanders+325
New York Rangers+400
Carolina Hurricanes+450
Pittsburgh Penguins+450
Washington Capitals+600
Philadelphia Flyers+800
New Jersey Devils+1600
Columbus Blue Jackets+8000

Because NHL futures will shift at BetOnline and other top online sportsbooks throughout the season, you will want to confirm these NHL odds before officially deciding on any NHL picks. While you might be find prior to the start of the regular season, NHL future odds are prone to wild swings once the games start to count toward the standings.

2021-22 NHL Division Winner Picks

Some might be wondering how we came to make these NHL predictions before the first face-off of the regular season. It's a fair inquiry.

Basically, we have tried to encompass every single factor possible into our NHL future picks. We looked at last year's performances, changes made over the offseason and even preseason developments. Rest assured, we've put a lot of thought into each prediction.

Now, let's kick things off with the Metropolitan Division.

Metropolitan Division Winner

Plenty of people will give the New York Rangers (+400) and Pittsburgh Penguins a look for this division. But so long as the New York Islanders (+325) are laying better than even money, they need to be the choice.

Neither oddsmakers nor bettors seem to have caught on to them. They deepened one of the league's best defenses over the offseason, and their offense showed it was ready for bigger-time performances on the wings during the playoffs.

Given how young there core remains, this is an easy call.

OSB Prediction: New York Islanders (+325)

New York Islanders To win the Metropolitan Division

Atlantic Division Winner

Check out the latest odds on who will win the Atlantic Division:

Tampa Bay Lightning+150
Toronto Maple Leafs+325
Boston Bruins+350
Florida Panthers+375
Montreal Canadiens+3300
Detroit Red Wings+8000
Ottawa Senators+10000
Buffalo Sabres+15000

Most outlets have the reigning back-to-back champion Tampa Bay Lightning (+150) ranked as the best team in the entire NHL rather than just the Atlantic Division. On some level, that feels like a no-brainer. On others, it isn't as clear.

Tampa Bay lost some real valuable talent offseason and could be looking at a stark drop-off defensively. Then again, they convinced veteran stud Zach Bogosian to sign a three-year discounted deal with them. He replaces some of the talent lost.

Beyond the Lightning, we really only gave consideration to the Toronto Maple Leafs (+325) and Boston Bruins (+325), but neither of them upgraded the roster enough for our tastes.

OSB Prediction: Tampa Bay Lightning (+150)

Tampa Bay Lightning To win the Atlantic Division

Central Division Winner

Check out the latest odds on who will win the Central Division:

Colorado Avalanche-200
Minnesota Wild+700
Dallas Stars+800
St. Louis Blues+1200
Winnipeg Jets+1400
Chicago Blackhawks+2000
Nashville Predators+4000
Arizona Coyotes+15000
Arizona Coyotes+15000

This might be the simplest decision among all divisions. Some people are down on the Colorado Avalanche (-200) following their premature playoff exit and knowing their core is on the older side and suffered some losses. 

To this we ask: If not Colorado, then who?

Next up in the odds pecking order is the Minnesota Wild (+700), and they didn't do anything substantial over the offseason aside from retain Kirill Kaprizov, who continues to need better talent around him on offense.

OSB Prediction: Colorado Avalanche (-200)

Colorado Avalanche To win the Central Division

Pacific Division Winner

Check out the latest odds on who will win the Pacific Division:

Vegas Golden Knights-200
Edmonton Oilers+500
Seattle Kraken+800
Calgary Flames+1400
Vancouver Canucks+1800
Los Angeles Kings+3300
San Jose Sharks+4000
Anaheim Ducks+12500

Defaulting to the Vegas Golden Knights (-200) is perfectly fine here. They had one of the best two-way teams entering the offseason and added Nolan Patrick, the No. 2 overall pick in 2017, to their fold.

Still, we're inclined to keep an eye on the Edmonton Oilers (+500). They have recently been one of the NHL's biggest underachievers, but they continue to employ both Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl, two perennial MVP candidates.

Plus, Edmonton was able to scoop up Zach Hyman in free agency. The addition of his playmaking both deepens and weaponizes their roster in a way it hasn't enjoyed for nearly a half-decade. 

The Oilers are not only a sleeper to win the Pacific Division. They should be on your radar to win the whole darn thing. Seriously.

OSB Prediction: Edmonton Oilers

Edmonton Oilers To win the Pacific Division

Check out this list of the top online sportsbooks so you can decide which one to use for all your NHL betting:

Meet the author

Eric Uribe

Eric has been passionate about sports since he was 10 years old. He brings over 10 years of sports journalism experience to his expert coverage of sports betting. Hailing from the US, Eric leverages his diverse expertise covering sports at all levels – from high schoo...

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