The Stanley Cup Final is here! The Florida Panthers swept the Carolina Hurricanes to win the Eastern Conference Final, and the Vegas Golden Knights took care of the Dallas Stars in six games earlier this week to win the West.
The Golden Knights and Panthers will now face off in the Stanley Cup Final as each team is looking to lift Lord Stanley’s Cup for the first time in franchise history.
Stanley Cup Final 2023 Betting Preview: Vegas Golden Knights Road to Final, Odds, & Conn Smythe Targets
Stanley Cup Final 2023 Betting Preview: Vegas Golden Knights
Vegas Golden Knights Road to Stanley Cup Final
The Golden Knights were very quietly one of the best teams in the league during the regular season. They finished with a 51-22-9 record for 111 points — the fifth-best record in the league and the best in the West. Still, many (including myself) counted them out in their first few series.
Vegas fell behind early in the opening round, losing Game 1 to the Winnipeg Jets 5-1. Then, however, things fell apart for Winnipeg, and the Golden Knights won the next four games — including a double-overtime thriller — to win the series.
Then it was the mighty Edmonton Oilers waiting for the Knights. The teams traded wins in each of the first four games, with Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl contributing in two blowout wins. Again, though, the Knights bounced back with wins in Games 5 and 6 to close out the series.
The Western Conference Final against the Stars was the Knights’ latest test. The first two games of the series at home went to overtime, with the Golden Knights getting the job done early in the extra session. They then took an early lead in Game 3 to go up 3-0 in the series.
The Stars looked dead but won the next two to force a Game 6 back in Dallas. Six was the number of the night in Game 6 for Vegas, with a 6-0 victory to advance to the Stanley Cup Final.
Vegas Golden Knights Stanley Cup Odds
To win: -125
To win in
- 4 games: +1100
- 5 games: +550
- 6 games: +500
- 7 games: +425
The Golden Knights are the favorites to win their first Stanley Cup. The oddsmakers are expecting a longer series, however, as Vegas to win in 7 is the most likely outcome at +425.
I don’t hate that as a bet if you’re just looking for some fun action on the Stanley Cup Final. It should be a long series, and Vegas has a home-ice advantage.
Vegas Golden Knights Conn Smythe Targets
Jack Eichel +425
This might be my favorite bet on the board. Eichel is in his first Stanley Cup Playoffs, and he’s making the most of it. The former Sabre has 18 points in 17 games to lead the team. Although he didn’t score a goal against the Stars, he had a four-game assist streak in Games 2 through 5.
Eichel can put up points in bunches — he has three three-point games in 17 playoff games — and the storyline for the superstar is there. It’s not a slam dunk or empty net by any means, but +425 is too high for Eichel.
Jonathan Marchessault +700
Marchessault is an original Golden Knight, and that could play a factor in the voting. But, of course, it doesn’t hurt that he has 17 points in 17 games in the playoffs and has a knack for scoring big goals. Still, given all of Vegas’ options, 7/1 might not be enough.
William Karlsson +700
You can pretty much copy and paste the Marchessault blurb for Karlsson. He’s an OG Knight and leads the team with ten goals (14 points) in the playoffs. But as with Marchessault, the value is gone at 7/1.
Adin Hill +1200
Could Hill go from bench goalie to playoff hero? It’s quite possible. At 12/1, you might have to sprinkle something on the cool, calm, and collected netminder that boasts a .937 SV% and 2.07 GAA with two shutouts in 11 playoff games (9 starts).
Mark Stone +2000
This is it if you want one longshot bet on the Golden Knights. Stone has been with the Knights since their second season, and he’s the team’s captain. He is also right up there with 15 points in 17 games despite playing through an injury. If he pots a couple of important goals, a 20/1 ticket will pay nicely.