The 2022-2023 NHL season is here, and fans of Western Conference teams begins with hopes of lifting the Stanley Cip. There is one team that is the clear favorite to win the conference, but there is a talented chasing pack that could make things difficult for the big boy at top.
Western Conference Futures Betting Odds
Western Conference Champ Favorites
The Avs are heavy favorites to win the Western Conference for the second consecutive season. Colorado returns most of their core from the Stanley Cup winning team and are geared for another long playoff run. Nathan MacKinnon and Cale Makar might be the two best players in the league, and they are primed to dominate at their positions again next season. The loss of Nazem Kadri, to Calgary, will hurt, but there is too much talent for it to affect the Avs.
Colorado does not have an obvious weakness and are going to be a problem for the Western Conference, and the entire NFL, this upcoming season.
The Rest Of The Pack
Colorado may be a big favorite, but there are four other teams with better than 10/1 odds that are ready to challenge the Avs. Edmonton is the second favorite and if they are ever going to get over the hump it is this season. The Oilers offense is as good as you’ll see, and they will be hopeful they trued up their goalie situation with the acquisition of Jack Campbell.
The new look Calgary Flames are right behind the Oilers, and this will be an interesting case study. Calgary is loaded, but they lost their two best players, Johnny Gaudreau to Columbus and Matthew Tkachuk to Florida, but they brought in more than capable replacements. I would wait on Calgary early because it might take some time to gel, and these odds become more valuable.
Rounding out the top five is the Vegas Golden Knights and Minnesota Wild. Vegas is coming off their first bad season in their short franchise history, but that seems like a one-time thing and the Golden Knights should bounce back nicely. Minnesota traded one of their best goal scorers, Kevin Fiala, to the Los Angeles Kings, but there is so much talent on this team it should not affect them. The goaltending will be a strength for the Wild and they should easily secure second-place in the division and could have a nice path the Conference Finals.
The Western Conference has some good teams in 2022-2023, but the conference, and the NHL, are still chasing the Colorado Avalanche. It’s hard to back any team other than Colorado, but this could be the year for Edmonton for everything to click. I see it as a two-team race.