While the 2021 NHL entry draft isn't viewed as being as deep as the 2020 class, as with Alexis Lafreniere last season, there appears to be a consensus No. 1 - Michigan's Owen Power. The Wolverines freshman defenceman didn't look out of place playing with the men at the IIHF world championship, winning a gold medal skating for Canada, playing in the top defensive pairing. Power is almost certainly going to the Buffalo Sabres.
2018 Brings New Challenges And New Hope To Some Canadian NHL Teams
Ottawa Is Thrilled 2017 Is Over
There is not one team that's happier about seeing the calendar flip over to 2018 in the entire NHL than the Ottawa Senators. The final two months of 2017 were downright awful for Ottawa as they went 4-17 SU from November 16th through December 31st and were embroiled in numerous negative storylines involving basically every aspect of the organization. Getting to 2018 was viewed as a fresh start for this team and the Senators have definitely treated it as such.
Now three games isn't close to a decent sample size, but Ottawa has gained at least a point in all three of their games played this calendar year, going 2-1 SU with the most recent game being a 6-3 win over the league's best team from Tampa Bay. The offensive scoring issues the Sens had for the final two months of 2017 were seemingly washed away with a three-goal, 3rd period outburst in a comeback win vs. San Jose, and it looks as though this entire squad has regained their confidence again. With two games this week before the mandated five days off, Ottawa would love to stretch this winning streak out to four games if they can. They've still got a long way to go to be playoff-relevant, but anything can happen with half the season left.
Edmonton Is Another Team Looking For Better Results
The Oilers came into this 2017-18 season with some lofty expectations of winning a Stanley Cup, and with that as the backdrop, there is no question they've been one of the league's most disappointing teams to date. If the playoffs were to start today, Edmonton would be 8 points behind Colorado for the final playoff spot in the West, and for a team that opened up the campaign basically as co-favorites for the Stanley Cup, Edmonton fans are hoping every single person involved with the team made, and accomplishes their New Year's Resolutions in 2018.
However, what plagued Edmonton for most of the first three months of the season - inconsistent play and a lack of production outside of Connor McDavid - hasn't really been fixed through four games in 2018, and likely won't until they decide to make some major personal moves - which will happen - during the coming weeks.
In the more immediate future though, Edmonton has to find a way to wrap up this current road trip with some multiple wins (@Nashville, @Arizona, @ Vegas) this week before heading home for the rest of the month and into early February. The time is definitely now for the Oilers to make that first big push up the standings and if the odds are attractive enough from a value standpoint during these next 10 games, Edmonton is a team I'm looking to back.
Winds Of Change Blowing In Montreal In 2018?
The Montreal Canadiens had high hopes for this year as well and while they are in a similar position to Edmonton in the standings (7 pts behind 8th place in East), the conversation is much different in Montreal. Many believe Montreal should look to blow up this entire year and begin building for the future again as it's tough to see them having the talent from top to bottom to make a significant run. I do agree with that sentiment and although management in Montreal has denied thinking about that possibility, it is something bettors should be aware of.
Should Montreal's struggles continue for the next week or two, the chocie to push for the playoffs or tank will basically be taken out of their hands. Tank mode will be out in full force at that point and before the betting lines get priced accordingly, it may be worth it to put Montreal on your "fade" list for the next few weeks.
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Canadian hockey fans have it made. There is no shortage of ways on how to watch the NHL. Whether it's TV stations or online streams, fans can tune in using their phones, tablets, or kick it old school by watching on television. Gone are the days where you had to go to one room and wait for one time to watch the NHL. Here are the many ways to watch the NHL in Canada.
The Tampa Bay Lightning are one win away from capturing their second straight Stanley Cup title. They lead the best-of-seven Cup final series against the Montreal Canadiens by a 3-0 count. In the Cup final for the first time in 28 years, Montreal has lost nine of 33 previous Stanley Cup final series. However, the Canadiens have only ever been swept in a final series one time in their history.
The Stanley Cup has gone through some unique firsts during the past two NHL seasons thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic. Last year's Cup final series didn't end until September. This year, with the launch of the regular season delayed until January, the Cup final series is stretching into July. One facet that hasn't changed, though, is that no matter when wagers are placed on the games, the bettors want to be certain that they are placing those wagers with the best betting sites for the Stanley Cup Finals.