Although teams have plated from 44 to 35 games, we have roughly reached the midway point of the NHL Season and in this somewhat disrupted season, due to cancellations and postponements of games, all of the four divisions in the NHL have a somewhat uneven look to them.
However, we can see which teams have been playing well, those that may need to improve to push themselves into genuine Stanley Cup contention, while there are others hoping to reach the playoffs, and some just trying to win more games to save face over the second half of the season.
What we are going to do now is give you a run through of how each of the four divisions has panned out so far this season, who are the teams to watch, who could make progress in the second half of the season, and who may struggle.
We will then take a look at the current Stanley Cup betting odds with UniBet Sportsbook, giving you the latest odds from the popular betting site.
Sportsbook new user promo
Casino new user promo
You must be over 21 to play and bet on Unibet. If you or someone you know has a gambling problem and wants help, call 1-800 GAMBLER.
One of the strongest divisions in the NHL sees the top four teams all having amassed at least 24 wins from the games they have played with the Florida Panthers (28-9-5) and the Tampa Bay Lightning (28-10-5) leading the way with 61 points.
Not too far behind and with several games in hand on their opponents are the Toronto Maple Leafs (25-10-3) and Boston Bruins (24-13-2). Of the four chasing teams, perhaps only the Detroit Red Wings (18-18-6) harbor realistic hopes of the playoffs, with the Buffalo Sabres, Ottawa Senators and Montreal Candiens, who have the worst record in the NHL, seemingly out of things.
The New York Rangers lead the way at the top of the Metropolitan Division (28-11-4) and they are three points ahead of the Pittsburgh Penguins (26-10-5) who have won their last five games to move above the Carolina Hurricanes (27-9-2) and the Washington Capitals (23-11-9).
It looks tough for any of the other four teams in the division, the Blue Jackets, Devils, Islanders or Flyers, the latter of whom have lost all their last 12, to get into serious contention for the playoffs, without putting together a consistent run of victories at some point soon.
Having won all of their last seven games, the Colorado Avalanche (29-8-3) lead the way in the Central, but they face a number of tough opponents who are not too far behind them in terms of points including the St. Louis Blues (25-12-5), Nashville Predators (26-14-3), Minnesota Wild (25-10-3) and even the Dallas Stars (21-16-2) and Winnipeg Jets (17-14-7) are not really out of the playoff picture.
Only the Chicago Blackhawks and the Arizona Coyotes look to have little chance of being in the Stanley Cup Playoff reckoning over the second half of the season.
Things are equally competitive in the Pacific Division in the west, with Vegas Golden Knights leading the way with 52 points (25-15-2). They are being chased by the Anaheim Ducks (21-16-7), Los Angeles Kings (21-16-6), Calgary Flames (19-12-6) and San Jose Sharps (21-19-2).
You also can’t discount the Edmonton Oilers (19-16-2) and Vancouver Canucks (18-19-4) from playoff contention with perhaps only the new franchise, the Seattle Kraken out of things as it stands.
Stanley Cup Winner Latest Odds
A quick look at the odds from UniBet Sportsbook reveals that the Colorado Avalanche have snowballed their way to being favourites to usurp the Tampa Bay Lightning as Stanley Cup holders with the Avalanche rated +500 to win it all.
The Lightning are ranked as the +700 second favorites for the Stanley Cup alongside the Vegas Golden Knights, with the Carolina Hurricanes and Florida Panthers at +800.
Coming in at +900 are the Toronto Maple Leafs, with two of the more surprising teams to have performed well this season, the Boston Bruins and Pittsburgh Penguins both rated as a +1400 shot.
As for the rank outsiders, the Arizona Coyotes are the rank outsiders, and you can get them at a massive +500,000 with UniBet.
Though it is not a bet I’d make on a team with just 10 wins in the season!
It should be a very interesting second half of the season and of course we’ll keep you posted with the latest news from the NHL as we head towards the Stanley Cup Playoffs.