Rangers, Penguins Top NHL Futures

The NHL is finally back and even though it’s only a shortened season, it’s going to be an action-packed one that bettors will really have to be on top of. Training camps are just around the corner and regular-season action is slated to start on January 19.

It’s been a while but let’s remember that the Los Angeles Kings are the reigning Stanley Cup champs. Last we saw them, the Western Conference’s No. 8 seed was carving everything in its path. With a young team and a roster that returns virtually intact, odds makers list them among the Western Conference favorites with odds of 12/1 to repeat as Cup champions.

Even so, odds makers list the Vancouver Canucks as the prohibitive favorite in the West (10/1 to win the Cup) as they have pedigree. They’ve finished with the most points in the conference in each of the last two seasons and are still built for another run – maybe this time without Roberto Luongo.

Meanwhile, the New York Rangers and Pittsburgh Penguins are the favorites. Many people will be inclined to bet on the Rangers, who stole offseason headlines by trading for sniper Rick Nash. The only thing they were missing last season was goal scoring and Nash might be the final piece to the puzzle. They are posted at 8/1 along with the Penguins to win the Cup.

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