The Stanley Cup final is upon us, and for the first time in five years, the NHL is guaranteed to have a first-time champion.
The Vegas Golden Knights will meet the Florida Panthers in a series loaded with skill, talent, and superstar-caliber play. Each club has only been to the Cup final once, with the Panthers getting swept out of the final in 1996 by the Colorado Avalanche and the Golden Knights falling in five games to the Capitals.
Despite the fact it’s a David vs Goliath matchup on paper, the odds on this series are extremely close. Here’s a look at the Cup odds ahead of the finals.
NHL Stanley Cup Winner Odds 2023
Check out the latest and most optimal NHL odds for teams to lift one of sports’ most coveted trophies.
NHL playoff winner lines I used in this article were timestamped on Tuesday, May 30, at DraftKings Sportsbook.
- Vegas Golden Knights (-130)
- Florida Panthers (+110)
The Panthers are 3-for-3 against 100-point foes and will try to knock off a fourth straight in the Golden Knights.
Florida, which was the last team into the tournament, is a slight underdog in the Cup final but has already knocked off a No. 1 seed, in the historically great Boston Bruins.
Vegas is in the final for the second time in its history after taking out the Stars in six games. The Golden Knights are great defensively, and goalie Adin Hill has filled in admirably for injured starter Laurent Brossoit.
Read my full coverage of Golden Knights vs Panthers series picks.
Stanley Cup Best Bet 2023
Vegas Golden Knights (-130)
The Panthers have been a great story, but the Cup is the Golden Knights’ to lose. Unlike five years ago when they shocked the world and reached the final in their inaugural season, these Golden Knights are battle-tested after making four final-four appearances in their first six seasons.
The Golden Knights are loaded, especially on their blue line where they have stalwarts Alex Pietrangelo, Shea Theodore, Alec Martinez, and Brayden McNabb. Forward Mark Stone plays an elite two-way game with 12 points through two rounds, and forward Jack Eichel is currently one of the favorites in Conn Smythe Trophy odds for the Stanley Cup Playoffs MVP.
The only major question for Vegas will come in goal, where Hill has been superb so far.
Stanley Cup Contender 2023
Florida Panthers (+110)
The Panthers are currently hotter than a South Florida summer day, and we’ve seen teams like this win before. (Hello, 2012 Kings.) The Panthers will enter the Cup final with an 11-1 record in their past 12 games after sweeping the Hurricanes in the Eastern Conference final.
Florida’s offense is awesome, led by Hart Trophy finalist and all-league pest Matthew Tkachuk and 42-goal scorer Carter Verhaeghe. The Panthers’ defense is underrated, led by Aaron Ekblad and 73-point-producer Brandon Montour.
There is reason to pause before placing this NHL bet, namely due to the Panthers goaltending. Sergei Bobrovsky has been on a major burner, soaring to the top of the list of Conn Smythe Trophy favorites, but he is known as a streaky netminder.
Florida’s odds jumped from +3500 at the start of the playoffs, but there’s still value to be had based on their plus-money odds.
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