2013 NHL Season Preview & Futures Betting Odds

by Scott on January 18, 2013

The NHL lockout is over, as any hockey fan would know by now. That means it’s time to start looking at what teams will end up contending for the 2012-13 NHL Stanley Cup. The regular season will only be 48 games, which I think is an edge for the older teams.

With the NHL season almost cut in half there is going to be no room for error if a team wants to make the playoffs. Training camp is short as well and that doesn’t bode well for the players that haven’t had any game experience overseas or in NA this winter.

2012-13 NHL Stanley Cup & Conference Winner Futures Odds

NHL TeamStanley Cup OddsEastern Conference OddsWestern Conference Odds
NHL TeamStanley Cup OddsEastern Conference OddsWestern Conference Odds
Pittsburgh Penguins+700+300
New York Rangers+700+350
Boston Bruins+1400+650
Philadelphia Flyers+1500+700
Carolina Hurricanes+2200+1000
Washington Capitals+2350+1100
Buffalo Sabres+2500+1200
Tampa Bay Lightning+2800+1300
New Jersey Devils+3300+1500
Toronto Maple Leafs+4500+2000
Florida Panthers+5000+2300
Ottawa Senators+5000+2300
Montreal Canadiens+6000+2700
Winnipeg Jets+7500+3300
New York Islanders+10000+4500
Los Angeles Kings+1100+500
Vancouver Canucks+1100+500
St. Louis Blues+1200+650
Chicago Blackhawks+1500+700
Detroit Red Wings+1800+850
San Jose Sharks+1800+850
Minnesota Wild+2000+900
Edmonton Oilers+2600+1400
Nashville Predators+3000+1400
Dallas Stars+4000+1850
Anaheim Ducks+4500+2000
Calgary Flames+5000+2300
Phoenix Coyotes+5000+2300
Colorado Avalanche+6600+2600
Columbus Blue Jackets+12500+6000

2013 NHL Eastern Conference Preview

Sidney-Crosby-Jan13The Atlantic Division last year was the class of the East and for the most part I expect more of the same. The Rangers won the East last season with 109 points (51-24-7) and they signed Rick Nash, which is going to make this team much stronger offensively.

The Rangers needed offence and that’s what they got in Nash. Last season the Rangers only allowed 187 GA, which was the lowest total in the Eastern Conference. With Lundqvist between the pipes and a stronger offence it’s no wonder the Rangers are favoured.

Three other teams that will give the NYR a run for their money include the Penguins (108 pts), Flyers (103 pts) and Devils (102 pts) in the Atlantic Division. I think the Penguins have the best chance, as Malkin and Crosby are both healthy and ready to start playing.

Last year Crosby missed most of the season and the Penguins still led the NHL in goals per game (3.3 GPG). If Crosby is healthy for the entire season the Penguins are going to be a contender for the Stanley Cup. Marc-Andre Fleury also needs another good year.

The Devils had a great season last year, but they lost Zach Parise. Losing Parise hurts the Devils tremendously. I was surprised that NJ made the Stanley Cup last year, but I definitely wouldn’t be surprised if the Devils don’t even make the playoffs this season.

The Flyers are an interesting team and they’re paying 7/1 to win the East. Philly is stacked on offence with players like Claude Giroux, Scott Hartnell, Brayden Schenn, Danny Briere, Sean Couturier and several others who can score plenty of goals.

Philadelphia averaged 3.17 goals per game (2nd) last season, but the problem was weak goaltending and brutal defence. Pronger is still not ready to play due to concussion, which hurts their chances and why I’m passing on the Flyers in the futures markets.

Alexander-Ovechkin-Jan13Outside of the Atlantic Division, the two best contenders are the Boston Bruins (102 Pts) and Washington Capitals (92 Pts). Florida Panthers (94 Pts) beat the Capitals in the Southeast Division last season by 2 pts, but I expect the Capitals to regain that title.

I like Boston’s line-up and they’re always a gritty team that could win the East and the Stanley Cup. The one question mark on the Bruins is going to be in goalie as Tim Thomas isn’t playing this season and Tuukka Rask is going to take over the full-time duties.

Washington had a tough season last year, but they have too much talent to not win the Southeast this year. Oates is the coach now and he’ll have his guys ready. The Capitals shored up some defensive issues by signing John Carlson to a 6-year 23.8M deal.

2012-13 Eastern Conference Futures Picks

Pittsburgh Penguins to win Eastern Conference +320

Washington Capitals to win Southeast Division +225

There isn’t much in terms of longshots in the Eastern Conference. I also like the Bruins to win the Northeast, but at -115 odds I will just pass on that future bet. The Penguins have what could be the best offence in the NHL this year with several stud players.

Even the Penguins 3rd line on the projected depth chart of Matt Cooke, Brandon Sutter and Tyler Kennedy is a deadly line that will score plenty of goals this season. With a shortened season the Penguins should be able to stay healthy as well for once.

I also bet the Capitals to win their division, as I expect a down year from the younger Panthers team. I’m much more worried about the Lightning who has two of the best players in the NHL in Vincent Lecavalier and Steven Stamkos.

Tampa Bay is 14/1 to win the East and if you’re looking for a flyer I’d pick them this season. The Capitals I’m high on this season, but it’s hard to trust them much after last season. If the Capitals falter early the Lightning could make a run in the Southeast at +325.

2013 NHL Western Conference Preview

TJ-Oshie-Jan13Last year the Vancouver Canucks (111 Pts) and St. Louis Blues (109 Pts) battled it out for the Western Conference. In the West the Central Division was the class with three teams other than the Canucks all finishing with over 100 points in the standings.

The Nashville Predators (104 Pts), Detroit Red Wings (102 Pts) and Chicago Blackhawks (101 Pts) were all tough in the West. As of now the Los Angeles Kings are co-favourites in to win the conference at 5/1 after winning the Stanley Cup last year as a #8 seed.

LA has two great lines on offence with stars like Anze Kopitar, Jeff Carter, Dustin Brown, Mike Richards and Dustin Penner. Quick is one of the best goalies in the NHL and is a huge reason why LA won the Cup. I think LA will make the playoffs, but as a lower seed.

Vancouver is another co-favourite at 5/1, but with Schneider getting the starting gig in net I’m not expecting much from them. Last year the Canucks ranked 5th in scoring with 2.94 goals per game, but the defence is weaker with the loss of Salo and Rome.

I always like a defence first attitude in the NHL and the Blues have executed that strategy flawlessly. They finished just 2 pts behind the Canucks in the West last season due to having the best goals against average in the NHL, as they allowed 1.89 goals per game.

The Blues only scored 2.51 goals per game (21st) last season and if they improve that they’ll be tough to beat. They have a good core of forwards including the projected 1st line of David Backes, David Perron and TJ Oshie who combined for 64 goals last season.

Nashville and Detroit both did great during the regular season last season. However, I’m not too high on either team this year. Now that Lindstrom is gone the Red Wings will need a new general to lead the team and I think the team will take a bit to gel.

Joe-Thornton-Jan13The Predators are a solid team in all areas, but they lack some of the superstar power that many teams have. Rinne is an excellent goaltender, Weber is a leader on the defence and the offence gels together. I just wish they’d trade for an elite goalscorer.

Chicago is 7/1 in the West right now after finishing in 5th in the conference last season. They were tied for 5th in goals scored with an average of 2.94 goals per game, but the goalie position is still a question mark with Crawford and Emery fighting for the starting gig.

San Jose at +850 to win the West or +215 to win the Pacific Division are both interesting bets. San Jose has a lot of veteran players that are running out of time to make a Cup run and with the condensed schedule I expect them to play their best hockey this year.

2012-13 Western Conference Futures Picks

St. Louis Blues to win Western Conference +650

San Jose Sharks to win Pacific Division +215

Edmonton Oilers to win Northwest Division +450

The Blues fell just short of winning the Western Conference last season and this year I think they will. If the offence plays at a higher level together they’ll be hard to catch with their excellent play on the defensive side of the puck.

San Jose still has a threatening line-up with the likes of Joe Thornton, Joe Pavelski, Patrick Marleau and Logan Couture. The Kings are going to be tough in the Pacific Division, but if the Sharks get out to a good start I think the veterans will step their game up.

My last pick is a longshot on the Oilers to win the Northwest this season. The young team is loaded with talent and if they can put it all together and get better goaltender play they could surprise some teams in the division once it’s all said and done.

I think Edmonton will have one of the best offensive teams in the NHL, but the question is how well the defence and goaltending can hold up. One thing’s for sure the Oilers should be a good team to bet over the goal total this season regardless of how they do.

About The Author

has written 67 awesome posts on tipsandpicks.com.

Scott primarily focuses on the US sports at Tips and Picks and he spends most of his time analyzing the betting markets to ensure bettors always get the best odds