The Colorado Avalanche start the season as heavy favorites to win their 3rd conference title in a row at NHL odds of +170, a price gap of +480 between themselves and second favored the Calgary Flames.
Check out which teams other than the Avalanche we believe have a chance to win the Western Conference as NHL picks.
Colorado Avalanche on Route to Another Conference Title?
The Avalanche have now won back-to-back Western Conference titles, although one of them was during Covid when the league divisions and conferences were very messed up. In 2019/20, Colorado finished just 1 win away from being level with the St. Louis Blues, meaning they could have potentially been in the hunt for 4 in a row (3 excluding the Covid Season).
It’s no wonder we are seeing their odds to win this year’s Western Conference as low as +170. Last season Colorado were priced up slightly higher with the top-rated sportsbooks to win the Western Conference odds of +225.
Their second closest rival, at least odds wise, was the Los Vegas Golden Knights at +325, and after that, we have to go all the way to +1200 for third favored Dallas Stars, Edmonton Oilers and Minnesota Wild.
Nathan McKinnon is the star of this Avalanche team and has put up 90+ points in 3 of the previous 4 seasons. Ironically last year was the year he didn’t hit 90 points, but not to worry he had 88 and scored a whopping 24 in the playoffs. McKinnon is the biggest key in the cog, without him the Avalanche would easily be at least +300.
Western Conference Futures Odds
- Colorado Avalanche (+170)
- Calgary Flames (+650)
- Edmonton Oilers (+700)
- Los Vegas Golden Knights (+850)
- Minnesota Wild (+900)
- St Louis Blues (+1000)
- Las Angeles Kings (+1400)
- Dallas Stars (+1600)
- Nashville Predators (+2500)
- Winnipeg Jets (+2500)
- Vancouver Canucks (+2500)
- Anaheim Ducks (+4000)
- Chicago Blackhawks (+6600)
- San Jose Sharks (+6600)
- Seattle Kraken (+6600)
- Arizona Coyotes (+15100)
Western Conference Divisions Breakdown
The Central division has a lot more teams capable of winning the Stanley Cup or going on a strong post season cup run with the likes of Colorado, Minnesota, St Louis, Dallas, and Nashville all in the mix.
Looking at the Pacific division, we can really only say both the Canadian teams in Edmonton and Calgary seem to have a shot this year, possibly the Golden Knights also, but we will have to see how they fare on the injury front etc.
Which Division Is More Competitive?
In our opinion the Central division is much stronger than the Pacific, the latter has a lot more whopping teams. A perfect example between the difference in the divisions last season was Nashville finished 5th in the Central with 97 points, whilst the Las Angeles Kings finished 3rd in the Pacific having accumulated 99 points.
Colorado might have the best “all around” team right now in the league, but things can go downhill and uphill pretty rapidly for teams in the NHL, an injury here or there could start a snowball effect, it happened plenty of strong teams in the past.
We feel a few more teams around their level in the conference have gotten much stronger this off season so it’s the Colorado Avalanches to lose, but they are far from a “sure thing” to win the conference this year.
Our Western Conference Favorite Picks
Our favorite selection to win this year’s Western Conference is the Calgary Flames at +650 with BetOnline, yes, they are the second favored, but for good reason, not only do they have a strong team, but like we said, there are weaker teams in the Pacific division and the Flames should be able to exploit this.
Undoubtedly Colorado are a strong team, of course they are they won the Stanley Cup last season, but +175 is way too low for us to be betting against the St Louis Blues, Minnesota Wild, Dallas Stars and Nashville predators.
If any team in the Central division is going to top the Western Conference, they will have to win their division first and foremost and the most likely candidate in our eyes to pip the Avalanche to the post this year is the Minnesota Wild but we love the value on the St Louis Blues at +550 to win the division and +1000 to win the Conference.
*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.