Golden Knights’ Odds to Win Western Conference as Short as -105

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Golden Knights forward Ryan Reaves fights through Canucks checkers

Ryan Reaves and the Golden Knights are heavy favorites to win the Western Conference title in 2020. Photo by News 1130 (Twitter).
  • The Golden Knights (-106) are the favorite to win the Western Conference championship, and no other team is close.
  • The Dallas Stars (+320) are second and Colorado Avalanche (+330) are third
  • Is there a better betting option than the Golden Knights?

The Vegas Golden Knights are the runaway favorites in the Western Conference odds, sitting as short as -105 to reach the Stanley Cup finals.

2020 Western Conference Title Odds

Player Odds at BetMGM
Vegas Golden Knights +105
Dallas Stars +320
Colorado Avalanche +330
Vancouver Canucks +900

Odds as of Aug. 28th.

Coach Pete DeBoer’s Golden Knights have scored four or more goals seven times in their 10 playoff games. They boast two quality goaltenders. And their defensive corp, led by Shea Theodore, Nate Schmidt, and Alec Martinez, is impressively steady.

Their odds have steadily improved since the NHL announced its intention to restart with a unique playoff format.

Oddsmakers were not deterred by the Golden Knights’ 5-2 loss to the Vancouver Canucks, mostly because the the Golden Knights were the better team in that game . The Canucks won on the strength of goaltending and shot-blocking. If you watched the game, it is difficult to believe the Canucks could win four games in that fashion.

2020 Stanley Cup Odds Tracker

What’s Up with the Golden Knights’ Goaltending

DeBoer hasn’t said whether Robin Lehner or Marc-Andre Fleury will start Game 3 against the Canucks. That decision will settle the question of whether Fleury is still the No. 1 goalie.

In theory, the Golden Knights have been riding the hot goalie in Lehner who is 9-2 since being acquired from the Chicago Blackhawks. Lehner has been one of the Golden Knights’ best players since his arrival.

Fan-favorite Fleury, also popular with teammates, has handled the situation with class. But his agent Allan Walsh created controversy by publishing a doctored photo of Fleury being stabbed in the back by a sword with DeBoer’s name on it.

Fortunately for the Knights, Lehner and Fleury are friends. Fleury asked his agent to remove the photo and the situation was defused. But now that the Vancouver-Vegas series is tied, DeBoer will have a big decision to make. And then we will know how he views Fleury’s status.

Beware of the Avalanche

If you are looking for a bet with up-side, the Avalanche (+330) should draw your interest. Now that the talent-laden Avs have narrowed the Dallas Stars’ series lead to 2-1, you have to entertain the idea that they could still win the Western Conference playoff title. Right now, their odds are enticing.

But don’t get too carried away with the Avalanche because they are dealing with injuries to goalie Philippe Grubauer, plus defensemen Erik Johnson and Nikita Zadorov. The Nathan MacKinnon-led Avs are a high-scoring team, but those are significant losses. Plus, the Stars are playing better than anticipated.

Keep in mind that you won’t get +330 if the Avalanche win Game 4.

Why It’s Difficult to Believe in the Stars

The Dallas Stars, scoring 3.25 goals per game in the playoffs, rank sixth overall in scoring. During the regular-season, they averaged 2. 58 goals per game to rank 26th out of 31 NHL teams. This team struggled mightily to score for many months and now they look like an offensive juggernaut.

It doesn’t feel like they can continue to score at this rate. In Game 3 against Colorado, the Stars traded goals with the high-scoring Avalanche and lost. We can guess the Stars will employ a tighter defensive strategy in Game 4.

Unquestionably, the Stars have played better than anticipated. After a miserable regular-season, Joe Pavelski (seven goals) has rediscovered his scoring touch.

The other factor to keep in mind: the Stars are winning with their backup goalie Anton Khudobin. Ben Bishop is hurt again. You might buy into the Stars if Bishop was healthy.

Golden Knights Are the Safest Pick

The Golden Knights are deep to the point that no one pays attention to the fact that Shea Theodore has developed into an elite defenseman. Vegas just has too many weapons to be overpowered.

The price on Colorado makes the Avs intriguing. But Vegas should be favored over Colorado even if the Avs had no injuries.

Pick: Vegas Golden Knights (-106)

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