We are officially a week into the NHL season and there have been several surprises in the world of real money NHL online betting sites. Hockey has always been a notoriously hard sport to handicap because there are so many different players that contribute to an individual game.
You can never be quite sure who is going to step up, or collapse, on any given night.
Teams Starting Strong
The team that has been the biggest surprise in the NHL has been the Toronto Maple Leafs. Much to everyone’s surprise, the Maple Leafs are 3-0 and riding high after a big win over the Pittsburgh Penguins.
An important fact for bettors to notice after the first three games is that the Maple Leafs have a goal differential of plus-6. This means that they have score 6 more combined goals than their opponents.
A goal differential is important to take into account when you are handicapping games. If a hockey team has a large goal differential, they are more likely to be able to cover the spread.
Despite the strong start, the Toronto Maple Leafs have only 60-1 odds to win the Stanley Cup. This likely shows that handicappers think the Maple Leafs start is a fluke and that they will not be able to keep up their steady play. Now might be a good time for you to jump on Toronto and put some money on them if you think they are for real.
The Pittsburgh Penguins and Washington Capitals are considered the favorites to win it all at 6-1 odds. Defending Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks have dropped from 5-1 at the start of the season to 7-1.
The Pittsburgh Penguins are a team that you should start worrying about. They’ve lost all three games they have played at home as heavy favorites. Goalie Marc-Andre Fleury struggles are starting to bring down the entire team.
You should be wary in all future games that the Penguins are favorites at sportsbook betting sites and Fleury is still in goal. The Penguins upcoming showdown with the Philadelphia Flyers, 14-1 favorites to win the Cup, is sure to be an exciting matchup for bettors to analyze.