The NHL trade deadline passed earlier this week, and the favorite to hoist the Stanley Cup at the end of the season was one of the busier teams in making changes.
The Tampa Bay Lightning picked up Barclay Goodrow on Monday, deadline day, in a deal with the San Jose Sharks. The week prior, the Lightning acquired Blake Coleman from the New Jersey Devils.
In Goodrow, the Bolts got a physical forward who is solid on the penalty kill. While the league’s top offense added some more firepower with Coleman, who has scored 20 goals a season since the 2018-19 campaign. He needed just 57 games with the Devils this season to light the lamp 21 times.
The newcomers have been quickly embraced by their new teammates.
It shows that our ownership and management are determined to win,” team captain Steven Stamkos told NHL.com. “It’s the same way we feel in this room. To go get some guys like that at the deadline, as a player it’s a dream come true.”
While the Lightning are in second place in the NHL’s Atlantic Division with 85 points, they’re the favorite to win the Stanley Cup. DraftKings lists them at +475, while William Hill and BetMGM offer them at +500. FanDuel, meanwhile, gives +550 odds.
At the start of the NHL preseason last September, the Lightning were +700 favorites at FanDuel, +750 favorites at William Hill, and the top choice at +800 at BetMGM.
Being the favorite, however, is nothing new for Tampa Bay. After winning 62 of 82 games last season, FanDuel listed them at +195 when the Stanley Cup Playoffs started in April. However, the Lightning faced a very hot Columbus Blue Jackets team that won seven of their last eight just to squeak into the playoffs. Columbus then unceremoniously dumped the Lightning in a four-game first-round sweep.
Bruins Second Choice on Futures Board
All three sportsbooks are also in consensus with their second choice. The Boston Bruins, who lead Tampa Bay by five points in the Atlantic, are at +550 at MGM, +650 at William Hill, +700 at FanDuel, and +750 at DraftKings. The Bruins feature a high-powered offense led by David Pastrnak, a 23-year-old right wing on pace for his first 50-goal season. His 45 goals and 19 power play scores lead the league.
Out west, oddsmakers have the Colorado Avalanche, Vegas Golden Knights, and defending Stanley Cup champions St. Louis Blues as the top three teams. William Hill has the Avs and Blues at +900, DraftKings has Vegas at +800, FanDuel has Colorado and the Golden Knights at +1000, while MGM has the Blues at +900.
In the NHL’s Metropolitan Division, the Pittsburgh Penguins are in second behind the Washington Capitals, but oddsmakers give a slight edge to the Pens, as all four books offer them at +1000. Only William Hill has the Caps that short.
FanDuel Customers Like Rangers, Devils
FanDuel is likely to have a profitable NHL season thanks to their customers making futures bets.
The sportsbook announced on Wednesday that the New York Rangers are its biggest liability in Stanley Cup futures betting, with the New Jersey Devils second. Fortunately for the sportsbook, both of those teams are currently on the outside of the playoff chase.
The Lightning have the third biggest handle at FanDuel, followed by the Caps and the Bruins.
Each team has about 20 games left in their 82-game season. The NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs will start in April.