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NHL Betting - 2009-10 Team Odds

Posted by Don Melrose on 9/29/2009 1:52:36 PM
NHL bettingNHL betting odds are transforming in the salary cap era. Teams’ chances rely less on deep pockets and more on good drafting and development. As a result, we’re seeing a changing of the guard; Detroit, San Jose and Pittsburgh have serious company at the top of the heap this season, as you’ll see in our 30-team preview.

2009 NHL betting odds: Bruins, Blackhawks and Flyers join the elite

  • Bruins are the league’s most complete team
  • Chicago can challenge Detroit and San Jose if it gets good enough goaltending
  • Philly is formidable but relying on yet another headcase goalie

Anaheim Ducks odds
Weren’t the Ducks supposed to be rebuilding? Thanks to some astute moves by management, they’re ready to contend again. Anaheim boasts one of the league’s premier first lines in Getzlaf-Perry-Ryan and should improve as Saku Koivu and Joffrey Lupul give the Ducks secondary scoring. The Ducks could surprise.

Atlanta Thrashers odds
Expect more of the same in one of the NHL’s worst hockey cities. Rookie Evander Kane has a bright future but may not make the team this season. The Thrashers must improve to keep Ilya Kovalchuk interested in re-signing but Toronto imports Nik Antropov and Pavel Kubina may not be enough to do that.

Boston Bruins odds
2008-09 was a banner year for Boston, it they dominated the Eastern Conference in the regular season, but that was just the beginning. This team is young, massive up front, defensively sound and cohesive. The East – and maybe even the Stanley Cup – is Boston’s to lose this season.

Buffalo Sabres odds
It’s strange to see a team that clearly needs some tinkering do nothing to improve in the offseason. The Sabres are fast up front and strong in goal but will get bullied by tougher teams and have zero talent on defense. Don’t expect a playoff berth.

Calgary Flames odds
Calgary plugged a hole in the offseason, bolstering its defense by acquiring Jay Bouwmeester and defensive-minded coach Brent Sutter. However, the Flames didn’t replace Mike Cammalleri or Todd Bertuzzi on offense. They’ll have to hope Mikael Backlund is NHL-ready if they want to contend.

Carolina Hurricanes odds
After scuffling for a few seasons, the ’Canes have regained the form that made them Cup champs in 2006. They rely on stellar goaltending from Cam Ward and great depth and size at forward. If they can acquire help on “D,” they could make noise in the East again.

Chicago Blackhawks odds
The envy of practically every fan and GM out there, the Blackhawks have it all. They have a dynamic group of forwards led by Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews and a dynamite blueline anchored by Brent Seabrook and Duncan Keith. They only thing between Chicago and a Final berth is Cristobal Huet. Can he become a No.1 goalie again?

Colorado Avalanche odds
The Joe Sakic era ended and took Colorado’s competitiveness with it. The Avs are several years away from contending again and will spend this season developing Matt Duchene while preparing for another top-five draft selection.

Columbus Blue Jackets odds
Everything finally clicked for the Blue Jackets last season, as they earned their first-ever playoff berth. However, we should still temper our expectations this season. They depend heavily on Rick Nash for offense and Steve Mason for defense. It’s too early to tell if the supporting cast can step it up now.

Dallas Stars odds
The consensus in hockey betting circles is that the Stars are a total mystery this season. They went from darkhorse Cup contender to non-playoff team in one season. After management pinched pennies this summer, it’s hard to imagine a big improvement in the Lone Star State.

Detroit Red Wings odds
The Wings seem like they’ll contend for all eternity, largely because they’re so good at rebuilding from within. They lost Marian Hossa but Darren Helm, Niklas Kronwall and Jonathan Ericsson are just the latest group of home-grown talents who will become stalwarts. Detroit has tougher competition this year but will be in the hunt.

Edmonton Oilers odds
Can the Oilers finally live up to their potential? They have youth and speed to spare and a legit No. 1 goalie in Nikolai Khabibulin. Now it’s up to Pat Quinn to prove he can translate his success coaching Canada’s world juniors into success with a young NHL team. The Oil should compete for the last playoff seed in the West.

Florida Panthers odds
The Panthers came within a hair of playoff hockey last season and won’t be satisfied if they don’t reach the big dance this year. They have some good young forwards but Jay Bouwmeester’s departure will sting; a regression could happen.

Los Angeles Kings odds
Sleeper alert! Like the Blackhawks a couple of years ago, the Kings have lurked in the Western Conference basement for years, stockpiling high draft picks and young talent. One of these years, the young core will break through and become a playoff team. This could be that year.

Minnesota Wild odds
Minny’s defensive style may have departed with Jacques Lemaire. New management wants to convert the Wild to an up-tempo, offensive team, but that may not be a good thing for Minnesota just yet. The defense-first system maximized role players’ potential and generated wins without top-flight talent. A run-and-gun attack only works on a team with lots of scorers and the Wild don’t have many yet. A playoff berth is wishful thinking.

Montreal Canadiens odds
Has a team ever made itself over so significantly in one offseason? Montreal built a new, veteran blueline through free agency and imported several small, creative forwards in Cammalleri, Scott Gomez and Brian Gionta. The end result will be much of the same; Montreal will score plenty and get pushed around by their tougher divisional rivals.

Nashville Predators odds
The Preds have the defensive tools to be a shutdown team but they’re offensively challenged up front. Unless Steve Sullivan stays healthy and jumpstarts Nashville’s attack, Music City will be on the outside of the playoff picture again.

New Jersey Devils odds
After an exciting season in which the Devils finally loosened up and scored some goals, the vintage Devils may return this season. Jacques Lemaire, the man who built New Jersey’s system, returns. Is New Jersey’s speedy unit suited to his strategy, though? This is a playoff team, but we could see growing pains.

New York Islanders odds
One man can only do so much. John Tavares should become a top-notch scorer and will give Isles fans something to cheer for, but this is still a bad, bad hockey team years away from relevancy.

New York Rangers odds
The high-profile Broadway Blueshirts will be competitive. However, unless Marian Gaborik stays healthy and really jumpstarts the offense, the Rangers could be a bust this season. Competitors like Ottawa and Toronto improved dramatically in the offseason and want to steal a low seeding from New York.

Ottawa Senators odds
Even if they could’ve gotten more for Dany Heatley, Ottawa got better in the summer – maybe a lot better. Milan Michalek and Jonathan Cheechoo give Ottawa a second good scoring line for the first time in years and Pascal Leclaire could be the goalie the city’s been waiting for…if he stays healthy.

Philadelphia Flyers odds
It’s a fun time for Flyer fans, as Philly has oodles of scoring talent and Chris Pronger seriously bolsters the blueline. The big question mark is Ray Emery. If he shows up, the Flyers are Cup contenders. If not, they’ll stay in the second tier.

Phoenix Coyotes odds
Maybe all the talk of moving to Hamilton is a distraction from how bad they were last season. The Coyotes disappointed in 2008-09 but the news isn’t all bad; they have plenty of good young players and could take a big leap forward any time.

Pittsburgh Penguins odds
The Pens proved last year that two or three superstars with little else can win you a Stanley Cup. Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Marc-Andre Fleury ran the show while deadline acquisitions like Chris Kunitz and Bill Guerin filled the gaps. There’s no reason to think the Pens can’t make another deep run, though the young defenseman must step up after unsung heroes Rob Scuderi and Hal Gill left town.

St. Louis Blues odds
Is the development phase officially over in St. Louis? Young as can be and full of rising offensive talent, the Blues are positioned to contend for the next decade. They may have been slightly ahead of schedule in making the playoffs last year, so a tiny step backward could happen, but the Blues’ future is bright.

San Jose Sharks odds
After years of “is this the year?” talk, it’s time to wonder if this is the year San Jose’s cup dream ends. The Sharks thinned out their roster to get Dany Heatley and have one year of Patrick Marleau left; if the Sharks don’t win this season, it may be time to rebuild.

Tampa Bay Lightning odds
Always a tough team to handicap, the Lightning have the talent to improve dramatically. Steven Stamkos broke out late last year and could be a dynamic offensive presence alongside Vinny Lecavalier and Martin St. Louis. Who knows how ultra defensive prospect Victor Hedman will transition to the NHL? Tampa probably won’t make the playoffs but could inch closer.

Toronto Maple Leafs odds
One of the busiest teams this offseason, Brian Burke’s Leafs are bigger, tougher, stronger and more talented, especially after acquiring Phil Kessel. The blueline rocks but the Leafs are still shallow offensively and a lot has to go right for them to make the playoffs.

Vancouver Canucks odds
Vancouver seemed overrated entering last season; now, it may be underrated. Ryan Kesler and Alex Burrows have transformed Vancouver into a two-line team. With tough “D” and elite goaltending from Roberto Luongo, the Canucks are good enough to earn home ice in the first round of the playoffs.

Washington Capitals odds
The Caps are maddening. They’re loaded with scorers, as exciting as any team in the league, but did nothing to improve their thin defense. We should expect Washington to match last year’s solid effort, not improve on it.

Click the team links for separate previews of each NHL team. For full NHL odds, check out our sportsbook.

Don Melrose is's hockey expert.



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