The 2017/18 season has now finished. The dust has now settled so I thought it would be a good time to reflect on who has been the best and worst NHL teams to bet on in terms of value.
Washington winners once again
First of all, congratulations to the Washington Capitals for their second Stanley Cup victory and their first in 20 years. They were deserved winners (even if they did beat my tip to win, the Tampa Bay Lightning!)
A special mention must also go to the Las Vegas Golden Knights on making the finals in the debut season. Few could have predicted they would even make the playoffs, let alone win the West and making the final! What an outstanding achievement and they deserve a lot of credit.
Now to the post
I will be showing you what teams have proven to be the best and worst teams to bet on throughout the season in terms of value for money.
Trying to find the best odds, prices and betting tips for the NHL was difficult as there are so many teams and no obvious favourites.
Teams like the Chicago Blackhawks and the Edmonton Oilers severely under performed while the Colorado Avalanche and Winnipeg Jets exceeded pre season expectations.
But there is no doubt when it comes to who provide the best value for money during the 2017/18 season: it was obviously The Vegas Golden Knights.
It couldn’t have been anyone else, really, could it?
What a story the Golden Knights turned out to be.
It was amazing not just for the state of Las Vegas but for sport as a whole. It was so refreshing seeing a brand new time tear up the league as they did. No one gave them a chance!
Take a look at the below:
As you can see, they were +20,000 (or 200/1 the Europeans) to win the Stanley Cup. If you look at their odds for the 2018/19 season you will see that they will be at around 11/1.
They were able to profit you 19 units profit per unit by betting on them winning every match they played. This is a huge reason why they provided the most value during the 2017/18 season. Vegas averaged a 62 win percentage during the regular season. Considering this was their debut season as a franchise, the prices were favourable and capitalising would have got you a healthy profit.
Just take a look at Vegas’ first five games of the season for example:
Arizona finished the season with a home record of 16-21-4. Boston even finished the season with an away record of 22-12-7 If you could go back in time and take these odds knowing what would happen, you would bite their hand off!
The final stat we see shows that Golden Knights scored over 3 goals a game. This meant that it was easy to determine whether opposing teams could also score 3 goals to get over the 5.5 money line. Not only that, since they scored many goals, it was also profitable to make money by betting on Vegas scoring over 2.5 a game. Again, this provided value due to them a rookie franchise, especially at the start of the season!
Let’s now take a look at the team that provided the worst value for NHL betting for the 2017/18 season: The Tampa Bay Lightning.
Great team, poor value
Tampa Bay Lightning had a very good regular season and were unfortunate not to get through to the finals.
However, as we can see from the second infographic, the Lightning would not have been good value for money when it came to backing them for sports plays.
For starters, as they were one of the favourites to win the Stanley Cup, the odds of them winning regular season matches reflected this. Their longest odds to win were at +148 where they were at Dallas. Comparing that to Boston, who finished only a point behind in the West in the end, their odds away at Dallas were +165. And this was on the back of a 3 game winning streak for the Bruins!
The next stat shows us that against the worst team in the league this year, the Buffalo Sabres, the Lightning were placed at -336.
Compare that to Nashville, who ended up having a better campaign than Tampa, the Predators were at -300.As you can see, even though Nashville ended up losing, this did not represent the best value for money.
The same principles apply to when looking at how they priced up against the best teams in the NHL this year, as seen from the third stat from the infograph.
And next season?
It is unlikely that betting on the NHL will be able to provide as much value as the Golden Knights gave us last year. Bookmakers have slashed the odds on Vegas winning the Stanley Cup in 2018/19 to around the +1,100 mark.
However, in order to maximise profits, it’s important to do research before making plays. Washington are around +1,200 to win back-to-back titles and it would not surprise me if they become champions again.
This offseason will give us a better idea as to who could provide the best value betting for next season. A few draft picks here and and trade there could make the difference between a good play and a great play.
All I know is that this will be an interesting summer. I will be doing a lot of analysis to make sure you guys get the best tips to make a successful and profitable season.