As we’re approaching the beginning of the 2022–23 NHL training camps, anticipation for the season is rapidly growing. Along with that anticipation comes the first odds of the year and after a crazy offseason league-wide, we’re going to focus on the best lines to add some cash to your wallet.
Each category will include two of either, a “sleeper” selection with higher risk, and a “shoe in” selection with lower risk. A reminder that all picks discussed in this article are personal opinions and TWC is not responsible for any financial loss associated with bets placed following the recommendations below.
Regular Season Points (Team)
Futures prop betting is all about the long game and entering the year of Bedard sweepstakes, team point totals are an especially desirable line. Most teams heading for the draft lottery this season have already made their intentions for the season clear. On the other side of the coin, few teams league-wide have retained their core and head coach, making for some interesting overs and unders entering the season.
Shoo-in – ARZ Coyotes (U/65.5pts) -120 odds
I don’t know what I really need to say here that you don’t already know. This team arguably won’t even be the best team playing in ASU’s 5000-seat barn this season. After an extremely lacklustre offseason it’s clear that Arizona is amping up for a low point total this year and as many lottery balls as they can get come next July.
As disappointing as last season was for the Yotes (finishing with 57 points), a bad case of deja vu will likely ensue this season. Expecting this team to win more than 25–28 games would be astonishing in my eyes, even with Chicago in the same division.
Sleeper – EDM Oilers (O/102.5pts) +100 odds
The odds are looking good for an Oilers team that retained a huge portion of their roster, added a starting goalie that stays within 10 ft of his crease, and re-signed the head coach that took them to the Western Conference Final. By and large, this is a recipe for a strong regular season.
In a Pacific Division with a new-look Flames team and the slot machine of big-money players riddled with injuries that is Vegas, the Oilers finishing around the same place they did last season (104pts) is very realistic. I personally don’t like to cheer for Oilers’ success as a Flames fan, but if it means doubling my money and getting to see another Battle of Alberta in the playoffs, count me in.
Regular Season Awards
Regular season awards, or for bettors, everyone’s favourite part of the season that means absolutely nothing unless you gambled on it. Season awards are extremely difficult to pick, outside of the Art Ross, Rocket Richard, among other performance-driven awards, due to the writers association voting. Obviously subjective opinion is a tough thing to gamble on but my Hart Memorial shoo-in is the most confident selection I have across all the futures picks discussed today.
Shoo-in – Hart Memorial Trophy – Connor McDavid +250 odds
Honestly, Connor McDavid could play the whole season on a 3v5 penalty kill and I would still put him in the top 3 to win the Hart next year. Last season’s playoffs unleashed a new level no one’s seen from the generational superstar. full season alongside Leon Draisaitl and Evander Kane—if he makes it through a whole season—will push monstrous numbers over 82 games. McDavid’s the obvious selection but with +250 odds, there’s still great money to make here.
Sleeper – Vezina Trophy – Juuse Saros +1000 odds
Juuse Saros showed incredible flashes of play last season on a Nashville team that seemed to bounce up and down the standings all year. Arguably, Saros was the reason the team made the playoffs at the end of last season. If it wasn’t for a knee injury taking him out of the first round, I think Nashville would’ve held their own slightly better against the unstoppable Colarado offence.
Saros is very different than most starters in today’s NHL standing only 5’11”. Height most certainly doesn’t measure heart in Saros’ case as he looks to pencil himself in for 65+ starts this season. Last year he finished the season with a 2.64 GAA and a 0.918 SV% while leading the league in starts.
Nashville will face a slightly less competitive Central Division this season and the Finnish product will look to have a big breakout and solidify himself as one of the elite starters in the league.
Stanley Cup Champions
After Colorado took an offensively dominant team to the top last season we enter 2022–23 with a field of teams that look much different than last season. Picking a cup contender in August is definitely not the easiest wager to get onboard with but after seeing these two teams odds opening the year, consider putting down some pocket change here.
Sleeper – Calgary Flames +1500 odds
Where do I start? After an emotional rollercoaster of an offseason, Brad Treliving pulled something off that no one imagined when free agency opened on July 13. The Flames roster destined to look like Swiss cheese was quickly flipped to a better all around team on paper after a month and a half of jaw dropping moves.
Outbound Johnny Gaudreau and Matthew Tkachuk‘s point totals were almost exactly replaced by the addition of Nazem Kadri and Jonathan Huberdeau, along with a high calibre first-pairing defencemen in MacKenzie Weegar. Re-signing the remainder of the young defensive core and replace Erik Gudbranson with Weegar makes the Flames look better than they were going into the offseason.
This pick might be biased, but with the sixth highest odds leading into the season, I’m not the only one thinking this team could go deep.
Sleeper – Boston Bruins +2500 odds
The entire city of Boston let out a big sigh of relief this offseason by re-signing Patrice Bergeron and adding David Krejci from their glory days in the early 2010s. This might seem crazy but a new head coach and retaining their leadership group might be enough to get this team over the hump this year. Obviously, the Eastern Conference is full of powerhouses like the Carolina Hurricanes, Tampa Bay Lightning, and New York Rangers, but Boston’s veteran core could surprise everyone. The odds on this one are too good not to take a chance but remember to tread lightly.
Wrapping up the recommendations
This year comes with tons of excitement around the league heading into the first true post-pandemic season schedule. Ideally there won’t be any breakouts or shutdowns in the league, which means there’s plenty of good hockey in store.
The new wave of talent and play style in the NHL is here to stay so buckle in and get ready for a rollercoaster season. Wager how you would like but I recommend placing $$$ (3 units) on shoo-in selections and $ (1 unit) on sleeper selections.
Stay tuned as we approach the regular season for weekly game picks and an updated futures selection at the halfway mark of the season.
Photo by Brett Holmes/Icon Sportswire