- BetOnline‘s opening 2022 NHL Division Futures heavily favor Colorado (-200) to win the Central
- Minnesota (+700) still hasn’t signed Kirill Kaprizov while the Blues (+1200) have yet to trade Vladimir Tarasenko
- The Blackhawks (+2000) have had a busy offseason with the additions of Seth Jones and Marc-Andre Fleury
The NHL is returning to its traditional schedule and divisional alignment for the upcoming 2021-22 season, with the Metropolitan Division and Atlantic Division in the Eastern Conference and the Central Division and Pacific Division in the Western Conference.
After previewing the Atlantic and the Metropolitan, today we’ll look at the odds to win the Central where the Colorado Avalanche hope to finally get over the hump and win the franchise’s first Stanley Cup since 2001. Also, be sure to check out our NHL betting tips page with resources on NHL Rookie MVP betting and more.
2022 Central Division Odds
|St. Louis Blues||+1200|
Colorado in peak form
The Avalanche (-200) lost Philipp Grubauer, Brandon Saad, Joonas Donskoi and Ryan Graves in the offseason, but they’re still the Stanley Cup favorites after re-signing captain Gabriel Landeskog and blue-chip defenseman Cale Makar. General manager Joe Sakic moved quickly to find an adequate replacement in net (Darcy Kuemper) and there’s still plenty of young ascending talent in Colorado.
No longer in a division with Vegas, Nathan MacKinnon‘s club should have no problem winning the Central – but are last year’s President’s Cup winners built for the postseason?
The Colorado Avalanche have acquired goaltender Darcy Kuemper in exchange for defender Connor Timmins, a 2022 1st round pick and a conditional 3rd round pick from the 2024 draft.#GoAvsGo pic.twitter.com/9HVOVwMLAR
— Colorado Avalanche (@Avalanche) July 29, 2021
Minnesota (+700) still hasn’t re-signed reigning Calder Trophy winner Kirill Kaprizov. While all signs indicate the deal will eventually get done, the Wild will need to make a major move (Jack Eichel anyone?) to compete with the Avs.
Just one year removed from a berth in the Cup Finals, Dallas (+800) is the far better bet. The Stars added defenseman Ryan Suter and will get Tyler Seguin and high-scoring rearguard Roope Hintz back healthy.
Best of the rest
The Blues (+1200) have followed their 2019 Cup victory with two straight first-round exits. While the additions of Brandon Saad and Pavel Buchnevich should help, GM Doug Armstrong may have missed the optimal trade window for Russian forward Vladimir Tarasenko just one year after letting captain Alex Pietrangelo leave in free agency.
Once viewed as a team with a bright future, Winnipeg (+1400) has been treading water since the exits of defensemen Dustin Byfuglien and Jacob Trouba, but trading for burly blueliner Brenden Dillon should help. The small-market Jets also brought back center Paul Stastny for added depth down the middle.
Even though longtime Blues forward — heck, legendary Blues forward — Vladimir Tarasenko has requested a trade, that doesn’t mean it’ll happen before Blues camp, writes @hochman.https://t.co/Eb5smcVDpp
— St. Louis Post-Dispatch (@stltoday) August 24, 2021
While winning the Central would be a tall order, Chicago (+2000) should be much improved with the return of captain Jonathan Toews and the additions of big defenseman Seth Jones, center Tyler Johnson and reigning Vezina winner Marc-Andre Fleury. The Blackhawks could find themselves back in the playoffs at the very least.
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