With a wild opening few days of free agency having come and gone, there’ve been some shakeups on the oddsboard with large names such as Matt Duchene, Sergei Bobrovsky and Artemi Panarin finding new homes for the foreseeable future. But lots of the favorites are still at the top of the oddsboard with the Tampa Bay Lightning leading the way as the very early favorites in +700.
Online sportsbook BetOnline has the Tampa Bay Lightning as the favorites to win the 2019-20 Stanley Cup in +700 followed by the Boston Bruins and Vegas Golden Knights in +1000, Colorado Avalanche and Toronto Maple Leafs at +1200, St. Louis Blues in +1400, along with the Nashville Predators, San Jose Sharks, Washington Capitals and Winnipeg Jets at +1600 to round out the leading teams on the oddsboard.
Leafs GM Kyle Dubas appears to have cleared from the last of the players that were around the 2013 Toronto Maple Leafs team that had the epic collapse in Game 7 against the Boston Bruins.
Defenseman Jake Gardiner is probably leaving via free agency and on July 1, the Leafs pulled off a trade with the Colorado Avalanche sending Nazem Kadri (the last of the 2013 team), Calle Rosen and a third-round pick into the Avs in exchange for Tyson Barrie, Alex Kerfoot and a sixth-round draft selection.
Much changed on the oddsboard as a result of this trade with Colorado staying pat at +1200 and Toronto dropping marginally from +1000 to currently fitting the Avalanche at +1200.
However, with rumors swirling regarding the potential of star restricted free agent Mitch Marner signing an offer sheet in the forthcoming days, don’t be surprised when the Leafs’ likelihood change.
The alleged price that could be coming Marner’s way is reportedly in the 12.5-million range each year, therefore it’s difficult to see that the Leafs being able to afford him at that amount. A compensation of four first-round selections from whichever team decides to attempt to pry Marner from Toronto would surely be attractive to Dubas.
Preds Land Duchene
Among the biggest names on the service list this past year was Matt Duchene. The 28-year-old centre is coming off his first 70-point season since the 2013-14 season when he played for Colorado, and he scored a career-high 31 goals as well. Additionally, he had 10 points in 10 playoff games, helping carry Columbus into its original second-round look.
The Nashville Predators would be the group to property Duchene on a seven-year, $56-million contract to assist the group that ranked 19th in scoring last year. From +2200 into +1600, their chances moved with the Preds signing Duchene.
Habs’ Offer-Sheet Strategies are Foiled
The Canadiens made waves by becoming the first team to sign a player — Carolina’s Sebastian Aho — to an offer sheet because the Calgary Flames went after Ryan O’Reilly at 2013. Carolina had a week to match the five-year, $42.27-million contract, and Hurricanes owner Tom Dundon has stated his group plans to do so.
Still, the Habs’ chances of winning the Stanley Cup have already been cut in half since free agency began, as they’re now +2500 after being accessible at +5000 before July 1.
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