The National Hockey League starts their season in about seven weeks. That gives hockey teams a small window to sign free agents and get their teams ready to play. As we might expect, NHL teams were busy last week. Check out thoughts about some of the top free agent signings so far this offseason so you can prepare and get ready to set down your bets against their NHL odds.
NHL COVID-19 Update – October 13th Edition
2020-2021 NHL Season
- When: December 1, 2020 – TBD 2021
NHL 2021 Stanley Cup Odds
- Colorado Avalanche +650
- Tampa Bay Lightning +700
- Vegas Golden Knights +700
- Boston Bruins +1200
- Toronto Maple Leafs +1600
- Philadelphia Flyers +1600
- Washington Capitals +1600
- Pittsburgh Penguins +1800
- Dallas Stars +2000
- St. Louis Blues 2000
- Vancouver Canucks +2000
- Edmonton Oilers +2000
- New York Rangers +2000
- Carolina Hurricanes +2000
- New York Islanders +2000
- Calgary Flames +3000
- Nashville Predators +3000
- Winnipeg Jets +3500
- Arizona Coyotes +4000
- Columbus Blue Jackets +5000
- Florida Panthers +5000
- Minnesota Wild +5000
- New Jersey Devils +5000
- Montreal Canadiens +6000
- San Jose Sharks +6000
- Anaheim Ducks +8000
- Buffalo Sabres +8000
- Chicago Blackhawks +8000
- Los Angeles Kings +8000
- Ottawa Senators +10000
- Detroit Red Wings +20000
Big time NHL free agent signing already happening
Henrik Lundqvist, maybe the greatest goalie to ever live, has taken his gear from New York to Washington. The Rangers decided to part ways with Lundqvist. Their loss is the Capitals’ gain. Lundqvist must stay healthy, of course, but with Henrik in goal, Washington should become a serious contender to win the Stanley Cup.
Washington’s goalie this season, Braden Holtby, signed a contract with the most surprising team in 2020, the Vancouver Canucks. The Canucks played well the entire season even making the playoffs and pushing one of the Stanley Cup favorites, the Vegas Golden Knights, to 7 games. Holtby went 25-14-6 with an 89.7 save percentage. In the postseason, Holtby dropped his goals allowed per match from 3.11 to 2.94.
Last season, the Toronto Maple Leafs allowed 3.2 goals per game. That ranked twenty-sixth. The Leafs scored 3.4 goals per ranking third. It’s obvious that if Toronto wanted to take the next step, contend for a Stanley Cup, they had to shore up their defense. The Leafs did exactly that by signing top defenseman T.J. Brodie. If Brodie can help the high-scoring Maple Leafs knock their goals per game allowed to 3 or less, that could make all difference for Toronto.
Defenseman Torrey Krug signed with the 2019 Stanley Cup winner St. Louis Blues. The Blues’ defense allowed 2.7 goals per match. Krug’s signing makes St. Louis’ blue line even better than it was in 2020.
Instead of shoring up their defense, the Buffalo Sabres decided to add offense by signing 2010 first round pick Taylor Hall. He played with the Arizona Coyotes this past season, racking up 52 points in 16 games. Taylor Hall should help an offense that ranked thirtieth in shots per game last season.
The Vegas Golden Knights entered the NHL season and restart as a big time favorite to win the title. They figure to enter the season starting on December 1 an even bigger Cup favorite after signing defenseman Alex Pietrangelo.
Most agree that Pietrangelo was the top prize in this year’s free agent class. His signing means the Golden Knights will become the favorite to win the 2021 Stanley Cup.
The Quest for the Cup starts on Dec. 1
The upcoming National Hockey League Season, whether it occurs in a bubble or not, projects as one of the most exciting in history. Already, two of the favorites, the Toronto Maple Leafs and Vegas Golden Knights, have made themselves better with huge free agent signings.
Will the defending champion Tampa Bay Lightning make a move to ensure they stay on top? How will the Dallas Stars get good enough to win the Cup and what about teams on the fringe like the New York Rangers and New York Islanders?
It’s not too early to get excited about the upcoming NHL Season!
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