We are now in the final week of the NHL regular season, with the start of the playoffs now just 6 days away. We are still waiting to see what the first-round matchups will look like, as we have a number of teams still jockeying for position over the final few games of the season. With all of that being said, we still have a very good idea as to which teams will be the favorites to make a deep playoff run, but as we have seen in the past, it’s never a very good idea to assume that the top seeds are going to go through the playoffs without suffering any type of adversity. Let’s now look ahead to see how things might play out in the road to the Stanley Cup so you can plan your bets against the NHL Playoffs Odds.
Updated NHL Playoffs Betting Predictions for the 2022 Postseason | April 26th Edition
Eastern Conference Betting Analysis
It will be the Florida Panthers who will head into the postseason as the #1 seed in the Eastern Conference. This is a team that has been ridiculously fun to watch all season long, scoring a ridiculous 332 goals through 79 games. They are absolutely the team to beat, although racking up goals in the playoffs is going to be a much tougher task.
It now also looks as though the Carolina Hurricanes will be the other division winner in the East, but as it stands now, they would have a tough opening round series against the Boston Bruins. The Hurricanes are finishing strong and will be very tough to take out.
The remaining seeds in the top 4 are the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Tampa Bay Lightning. The Leafs have been really good in the second half of the season and are emerging as a dark horse to win it all. The Lightning have won the Stanley Cup in each of the last two seasons, but there are some doubts about their chances of making it a threepeat this year. As it stands now, these two would meet in Round 1, which would arguably be the best series in Round 1.
One team that I would keep an eye on is the New York Rangers.
Western Conference Betting Analysis
We have known for quite some time that the Colorado Avalanche were going to be the #1 seed in the Western Conference. They are also still the favorites to win the Stanley Cup, and while that is a label that has been well-earned, this is a team that has had some struggles in the playoffs over the last couple of seasons. This, though, may well be the year where they make the big breakthrough.
The Calgary Flames will head into the playoffs as the Pacific Division champions, but they are also a team looking to break out of a playoff slump. Right now, they would go against the Nashville Predators, a team they have yet to beat this season, so might we be looking at a bit of a surprise in the opening round of the playoffs?
The matchup of the opening round, assuming things stay as they are, would be the Minnesota Wild and St. Louis Blues going head-to-head. Those teams are separated by a single point, so it’s important for them to finish strong so that one of them can secure home ice advantage.
As far as a dark horse in the West, I would be looking at the Edmonton Oilers.