- BetOnline’s NHL Pacific Division Futures have the Oilers (+240) and Flames (+250) as co-favorites
- The Kings (+375) brought in 33-goal-scorer Kevin Fiala from Minnesota this offseason
- Vegas (+385) hired former Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy after missing the playoffs for the first time in franchise history
The Pacific division is shaping up as a two-horse race between two clubs in Alberta, Canada with championship aspirations. While the Edmonton Oilers subtly tweaked their roster around an NHL MVP core of Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl, the Calgary Flames improvised on the fly, replacing star players Johnny Gaudreau and Matthew Tkachuk with Jonathan Huberdeau and Nazem Kadri.
Who will win out West? Before we look at the odds and make our picks, here’s where you can find the best Stanley Cup betting sites and the top betting sites for NHL hockey in 2022-23.
2023 NHL Pacific Division
|Los Angeles Kings||+375|
|Vegas Golden Knights||+385|
|San Jose Sharks||+5000|
Flurry of activity for Flames
The city of Calgary (+250) was up in the arms after superstar winger Johnny Gaudreau bolted for Columbus in free agency. When young forward Matthew Tkachuk asked for a trade shortly after, all hope was lost for last year’s division champions. Until, Brad Treliving pulled off the impossible.
First, the Flames general manager shipped Tkachuk to Florida for Jonathan Huberdeau and promptly re-upped the 115-point scorer on a eight-year, $84 million extension. He then signed 2022 Stanley Cup winner Nazem Kadri on a seven-year, $49 million deal. While both contracts are bound to age poorly, Treliving’s impressive improvisation skills should keep Calgary near the top of the Pacific in 2022/23.
Nazem Kadri to the Flames on a 7-year deal! 🔥 pic.twitter.com/xdywEVn4h3
— TSN (@TSN_Sports) August 18, 2022
Edmonton remain slight favorites
Edmonton (+240) signed former Maple Leaf Jack Campbell to man their net, but handing a 30-year-old UFA a five-year, $25 million pact may prove to be yet another mistake by management. While locking up rough-and-tumble forward Evander Kane for four years at $5.125M annually will provide much-needed depth, the Oilers still look thin behind Connor McDavid and Leon Draisiatl.
Can they build on their momentum after advancing to the Western Conference Finals last season or is more playoff disappointment ahead in Edmonton?
Los Angeles (+375) traded for 26-year-old forward Kevin Fiala after snapping their three-year playoff drought last season. The Kings are trending in the opposite direction of the Golden Knights (+385), who only got worse after missing the postseason for the first time in franchise history.
Vegas lost first-line winger Max Pacioretty and starting goaltender Robin Lehner. So, any improvements will have to come from new coach Bruce Cassidy and improved health from Jack Eichel and Mark Stone.
"I can tell you guys, honestly, I couldn’t be [happier] to play in LA.”@DooleyLAK talked with Kevin Fiala about what it feels like to be coming to LA & what he's going to bring to the team 👇
— LA Kings (@LAKings) August 11, 2022
Vancouver (+1000) is brimming with young talent like defenseman Quinn Hughes and center Elias Pettersson, and Bruce Boudreau has a history of getting the most out of his teams in the regular season.
Otherwise, the Pacific is pretty much a dumpster fire after the Canucks with bottom-feeders such as the Seattle Kraken (+3300), Anaheim Ducks (+5000) and San Jose Sharks (+5000).
While likely worse off for the long haul, the Flames (+250) are primed for another Pacific division title this season under hard-nosed coach Darryl Sutter.
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