The future of the next decade is still uncertain, but there are some things we can predict with certainty. Here are our top picks for what will be big in 2021.
The cj cup 2021 odds is a list of the top bets for the 2020 football season.
The NHL has returned! So, which clubs and players should you bet on?
Greg Wyshynski, host of In The Crease Arda Ocal, and sports betting expert Chris “The Bear” Fallica are here to provide their picks for the 2021-22 season.
Futures for the season
The New York Islanders are a +1000 favorite to win the Eastern Conference.
Ocal: I adore the Islanders, and I believe this is their year. For the last two postseasons, Tampa has been the Isles’ kryptonite. While the Lightning have lost offensive players, the Isles have acquired Zdeno Chara, Zach Parise, and Richard Panik while trading Jordan Eberle and Nick Leddy to the Kraken in the expansion draft. They were ranked first and second in ESPN’s best goalie tandem rankings, and at +1000 to win the conference, it’s a tempting wager, particularly if you believe the Isles will win it all, let alone the East.
The Florida Panthers are a +2200 favorite to win the Stanley Cup.
Fallica: Having two guys in the lineup for the whole season, G Spencer Knight and D Aaron Ekblad, should help the Panthers. Knight will very likely be the starting quarterback, and Ekblad’s comeback from a broken leg is crucial. The contract issue with Aleksander Barkov has been resolved, and the acquisition of Sam Reinhart should provide the Cats with some real attacking weapons. This is a club that lost in six games to Tampa last season after losing two tight games at home and having goalie issues, so it’s obvious they’re close. And their offseason moves have placed them right in the mix.
The Colorado Avalanche are favored by -220 to win the Central Division.
Fallica: While the center of the division is extremely close, Colorado has a talent advantage over everyone. Sure, the goaltender has changed, and Joonas Donskoi and Brandon Saad have left, but it’s difficult to see any club in the Central approaching what the Avs can provide over the course of a season.
Over 90.5 points for the Seattle Kraken (-110)
Wyshynski: I’m smashing this wager down on the city of Argos with the power of the great Kraken’s tentacle. At Caesars, Seattle’s regular-season point total has risen from 73.5 in July to 90.5 when the season starts. Philipp Grubauer and Chris Driedger’s goalie duo has the potential to be one of the greatest in the NHL. With the experienced forwards and puck-moving defenders on the roster, I believe they’ll score enough goals in front of them. But, more importantly, I think they’ll cross this number since they’re in the Pacific Division, where they’ll not only reach 90.5 points but also likely make the playoffs. (They have a -110 chance of doing so.)
Under 96.5 points for the Pittsburgh Penguins
Fallica: Pittsburgh will be without Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, and Jake Guentzel to begin the season, which includes two games against Tampa Bay and games against Florida and Toronto. This may put the Penguins behind the eight ball right away, and who knows how Tristan Jarry will react after a disappointing playoffs. The Penguins are in a division with the Islanders, who have had their number in recent years, the Capitals, Hurricanes, and a Rangers club that is on the rise. For a club with an aging core and question marks in net, a postseason spot isn’t certain this season.
Over 94.5 points for the New York Rangers
Fallica: Igor Shesterkin’s absence from the Blueshirts for three weeks last season had a significant impact on the team. Artemi Panarin has problems off the rink. Alexis Lafreniere was a rookie with great hopes, but he’ll have to replace some of the gap left by Pavel Buchnevich’s departure. However, this may be the season when the Rangers’ youthful core, headed by Norris Trophy winner Adam Fox, makes a major stride forward.
Under 103.5 points for the Boston Bruins
Fallica: Goaltending may be a big issue here, since Tuukka Rask’s season is in jeopardy, and who knows what Linus Ullmark will bring to the table. Jeremy Swayman performed well in a short sample size, but can he maintain that level over the course of 30 or 40 games? What impact will David Krejci’s departure have on Taylor Hall’s productivity and that line? While this division has three of the greatest teams in hockey (Florida, Tampa Bay, and Toronto), as well as some of the worst, 104 points seems to be a bit of a stretch this season, considering Boston’s 107 points in the previous full season.
Under 98.5 points for the Minnesota Wild
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Fallica: The Wild may be one of the greatest losers as a result of the new divisional structure. Minnesota benefited from having Anaheim, Arizona, Los Angeles, and San Jose in its division, but the Wild now have Dallas, St. Louis, Chicago, and Nashville in place of the three California bottom feeders. This isn’t a deal that will help you improve your record. Without Ryan Suter, Carson Soucy, and Nick Bonino, how will a club that won on defense fare? Is it possible for Cam Talbot and Kaapo Kahkonen to up their game? And, apart from Kirill Kaprizov and Kevin Fiala, are there enough goals from other players? There seem to be much too many questions for a score of 100.
The Chicago Blackhawks are expected to miss the playoffs by a factor of 100.
Wyshynski: The Blackhawks have made a lot of improvements this summer. After missing the whole previous season, captain Jonathan Toews has returned. Seth Jones, a defenseman, was acquired from Columbus in a major deal. Marc-Andre Fleury joins the team to help with goaltending. It’s also possible that moving Duncan Keith to the Oilers is a case of adding by removal. But at -120 to reach the playoffs in the Central Division, where they’re at least the fifth-best club heading into the season? I don’t think so. Chicago’s top point predictions are approximately 90 points. I discovered the lowest score to be 83 points. The Blackhawks, in my opinion, are somewhere in the middle, which implies they will not be a playoff club in a tough conference.
The Pittsburgh Penguins are expected to miss the playoffs (+250).
Ocal: The Penguins are in for an exciting year. The health and age of Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin are a source of worry, while goalie consistency and dependability will be a concern for some. It wouldn’t be shocking if this club reached the playoffs, and it would be strange if they weren’t, given that they’ve done it every year since Sidney Crosby’s second season in the league in 2007. At +250, it may be worth considering as a prop.
Charlie McAvoy is the favorite to win the Norris Trophy (+1400).
Wyshynski: Getting on the radar of the voters in the preceding season is crucial to winning the Norris Trophy. Roman Josi had been in the running for the award for two seasons in a row before winning it. The year before he won the Norris, Adam Fox of the Rangers finished fourth in the Calder with the identical vote pool. Last season, McAvoy finished sixth for the Norris Award, his best result ever. In three of his four seasons, he has been a plus-20 player. With expanded responsibility on the Bruins’ power play, he’ll have a higher point total. He’ll also be the center of attention during the Winter Olympics. If McAvoy can stay healthy, he might win the Norris Trophy this year.
Ocal: McAvoy was my choice last year, and I believe I will continue to choose him to win every year until he does. Cale Makar is certainly deserving of it, and he’s a good option at +500, but I also like Charlie McAvoy at +1400. He was, in my view, passed over for a nomination last year. He’ll be the B’s blue line’s bedrock for years to come, and he’s already assuming that position. The problem is his power-play output, which gives the D-men the “flash and pizzazz” vote.
For the Vezina Trophy, Phillip Grubauer (+1000) or Chris Driedger (+2500) are the favorites.
Ocal: This bet appeals to me since I like the Kraken’s goalie tandem. I’m really leaning toward Driedger here because I could see him earning the No. 1 position at some point throughout the season and being a stalwart in net, guiding the Kraken to the playoffs. Seattle also boasts a strong defense that, on paper, is among the best in the league. Consistent scoring will be a challenge for this club, but they have the potential to make the playoffs, particularly in the Pacific Division. And for voters, the narrative of “terrific goaltending paving the way for a club to reach the playoffs in their first year in the NHL” is appealing. The main choice is between Grubauer, who is reliable, and Driedger, who is one of the league’s top “No. 2” goalies.
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Leon Draisaitl (+1600) wins the Hart Trophy.
Ocal: To be clear, Nathan MacKinnon is my pick for the Hart Trophy this season. I believe he is having a “don’t forget about me” year. He’s the least spoken about among the superstars, particularly outside of the hockey bubble. But, if a man who won this title in 2020 is at +1600, do you think he’ll shine as he always does this season? That’s a really excellent figure. Connor McDavid, the reigning Hart Trophy winner, is now at +200. MacKinnon’s current position is +650. On the list, Draisaitl is ranked sixth. That strikes me as a decent deal.
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