We’ve passed the NHL hockey betting halfway point so it’s appropriate to get a new look at the NHL scenery and its power rankings. This past week we’ve seen a spectrum of activity amongst NHL sportsbooks, from the Toronto Maple Leafs and Minnesota Wild continuing to drop jaws to the Colorado Avalanche and Arizona Coyotes continuing to deliver dismal results. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the current NHL landscape.
Columbus might have something to say about it, but the Capitals are currently the team at the front of the NHL’s power rankings. Thanks to their stellar defense, Washington has currently won 9 in a row and is well on their way to becoming favorites for a bet on hockey games. Nevertheless, the entire NHL hockey betting community will be watching to see how they perform against the Penguins.
The Wild set themselves apart with their win over the Chicago Blackhawks last Sunday night. With that win Minnesota isolated themselves at the top of the Central Division, as well as the Western Conference. Additionally, that road victory marked Minnesota’s 14th road victory, the most of any team in their conference. Coach Bruce Boudreau is on his way to Los Angeles to coach the Central Division for the All-Star weekend – there are some sportsbook fans who believe Boudreau is also headed for a Coach of the Year award.
3.Columbus Blue Jackets
The Blue Jackets have been all over the place ever since their 16 game win streak was snapped on January 5th. Nevertheless, John Tortella has his team playing competitively each and every night which has been enough to keep Columbus within the top-5 ranking. However, Columbus better deliver a more impressive week or risk falling even further down the list.
The Canadiens find themselves so far up this list thanks to their come from behind victory over the New York Rangers this past Saturday. The Canadiens continue to separate themselves in the Atlantic Division but most other NHL teams feel like the Canadiens aren’t quite Stanley Cup-caliper.
Anaheim was able to deliver a 6-1-1 record for the month of January thanks to John Gibson’s 5 wins in his past 7 starts, which includes two shutouts. The Ducks may have qualified for the postseason the last 4 years but their lack of postseason success is a stark reminder as to why they need better results at the end of this year NHL hockey betting regular season.
The Penguins may be the reigning Stanley Cup champions, but the NHL is the hardest league to win back-to-back titles and Pittsburgh’s current ranking proves that. The Penguins have most recently lost three consecutive games and seeing Kris Letang leave the game with an injury this past Saturday night during a cringe-worthy loss to the Detroit Red Wings is not a sign that things will be changing any time soon. It’s been a rough start to the year for the Penguins and if they don’t begin a turnaround any time soon the sportsbook odds are going to keep thinking less of last year’s champions.