Oddsmaker: Preds, Flames, Sabres and Panthers biggest Stanley Cup longshots

16 Comments

Online oddsmaker Bovada has released its latest list of favorites — and longshots — for the 2015 Stanley Cup. While Chicago retained its spot at the top of the list (at 13/2, slightly shorter odds than the 7/1 it had back in July), we thought it’d be interesting to spotlight teams with the longest odds, at 75/1:

Calgary, Buffalo, Florida and Nashville.

It’s interesting to note that Nashville joined the longshot group after getting 66/1 odds two months ago. This drop coincided with the club replacing the services of arguably their top center (Mike Fisher) with veteran middle men Derek Roy and Mike Ribeiro.

Do keep in mind the increase in odds isn’t purely reflective of what Nashville has done in terms of player transactions; odds are often raised and/or dropped depending on how much action the team gets at a particular number. Of course, this is based on the premise people actually make Stanley Cup futures bets on the Predators.

Here is the full list of Cup contenders, per Bovada:

                                                Odds on 7/9/14             Current Odds   

Chicago Blackhawks                             7/1                    13/2

Los Angeles Kings                                9/1                    9/1

Boston Bruins                                       10/1                  10/1

Anaheim Ducks                                     12/1                  12/1

Pittsburgh Penguins                              12/1                  12/1

St. Louis Blues                                      12/1                  12/1

San Jose Sharks                                   14/1                  14/1

Minnesota Wild                                     18/1                  16/1

New York Rangers                                 16/1                  16/1

Tampa Bay Lightning                             18/1                  16/1

Colorado Avalanche                              18/1                  18/1

Montreal Canadiens                               20/1                  18/1

Dallas Stars                                         18/1                  20/1

Detroit Red Wings                                 22/1                  22/1

Philadelphia Flyers                                28/1                  28/1

Columbus Blue Jackets                         33/1                  33/1

Toronto Maple Leafs                             33/1                  40/1

Vancouver Canucks                               28/1                  40/1

Washington Capitals                              40/1                  40/1

Edmonton Oilers                                   50/1                  50/1

New Jersey Devils                                 50/1                  50/1

Carolina Hurricanes                                66/1                  66/1

New York Islanders                                50/1                  66/1

Ottawa Senators                                    50/1                  66/1

Arizona Coyotes                                    50/1                  66/1

Winnipeg Jets                                       50/1                  66/1

Buffalo Sabres                                      75/1                  75/1

Calgary Flames                                     75/1                  75/1

Florida Panthers                                    75/1                  75/1

Nashville Predators                               66/1                  75/1

Roberto Luongo leaves game with apparent injury, as Panthers fall to Penguins

Getty
Leave a comment

The Florida Panthers lost to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Friday. Making matters worse was the fact their goalie Roberto Luongo left the game in the third period with an apparent hand injury.

The injury occurred after a collision in the crease with Penguins forward Conor Sheary.

Luongo immediately went down to the ice in pain. A replay from above the net showed Luongo’s right hand getting caught in an awkward position against the post after coming into contact with Sheary as he cut through in front of the crease in pursuit of the puck.

The injury forced James Reimer off the bench and into the game with the Panthers trailing by a goal. MacKenzie Weegar tied the game for Florida before Sheary scored the eventual winner about eight minutes later, on a night when the Penguins fired 48 shots on the two Panthers goalies.

Luongo gave up three goals on 36 shots before leaving the game. The Panthers now head out on the road. They’ll visit the Washington Capitals on Saturday.

————

Cam Tucker is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @CamTucker_Sport.

MORE FROM NHL ON NBC SPORTS:

Video: More offside drama had Sabres coach Phil Housley up in arms

Getty
3 Comments

Just hours after the NHL admitted to an offside challenge error, there was another controversy during the Sabres-Canucks game on Friday.

Vancouver appeared to take the lead on a Daniel Sedin goal. However, Buffalo coach Phil Housley challenged the play for offside, after replays showed Jake Virtanen may not have had complete control of the puck as he broke in over the blue line.

The following challenge resulted in a brutally long review. For Buffalo, it was also unsuccessful as, surprisingly, officials deemed Virtanen did have control of the puck as he entered the zone. The goal counted, Vancouver took the lead.

Housley was not happy about it.

Not only was the challenge unsuccessful, but the Sabres were penalized for delay of game as a result.

From the NHL:

After reviewing all available replays and consulting with the Linesman, NHL Hockey Operations staff confirmed that Vancouver’s Jake Virtanen had possession and control of the puck as he entered the attacking zone prior to the goal. According to Rule 83.1, “a player actually controlling the puck who shall cross the line ahead of the puck shall not be considered ‘off-side,’ provided he had possession and control of the puck prior to his skates crossing the blue line.”

Therefore the original call stands – good goal Vancouver Canucks.

It took 4:27 to come to a decision, too.

————

Cam Tucker is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @CamTucker_Sport.

MORE FROM NHL ON NBC SPORTS:

Devils place goalie Cory Schneider on injured reserve

Getty
1 Comment

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) The New Jersey Devils placed goalie Cory Schneider on injured reserve with a lower-body injury suffered Thursday night in a 5-4 overtime victory at Ottawa.

Schneider left after the second period. Keith Kinkaid replaced him and stopped all nine shots he faced to earn the victory.

With Schneider sidelined, Kinkaid was expected to start Friday night at home against San Jose.

The Devils recalled goalie Scott Wedgewood from Binghamton of the American Hockey League.

The Devils catch a scheduling break with a week off until their next game Oct. 27, the first day Schneider is eligible to return.

Schneider is 4-1-0 in six games this season with a 3.30 goals-against average.

————

MORE FROM NHL ON NBC SPORTS:

Andreas Athanasiou, Red Wings finally settle on one-year deal

Getty Images
9 Comments

The contract stalemate between the Detroit Red Wings and Andreas Athanasiou is finally over.

On Friday, TSN’s Bob McKenzie reported that the two sides struck a deal that will see the 23-year-old forward back in the lineup, at least for this season. It’s a one-year deal worth $1.387 million.

Due to Detroit’s tight salary cap situation, the deal has not been officially registered with the NHL because general manager Ken Holland needs to free up space in order to fit Athanasiou’s contract.

Athanasiou, who was a restricted free agent this summer, was seeking a two-year deal worth around $2.5 million per season. The Red Wings, meanwhile, were holding firm on a one- or two-year deal carrying a $1.9 million AAV. As the stalemate dragged on, he began practicing with Swiss side HC Lugano, but did not sign a contract. He had until Dec. 1 to make an NHL return in order to be eligible to play this season. The KHL card was played, but as Torey Krug showed, that move is always a clear bluff.

The one-year pact is essentially a “show-me” deal for Athanasiou, who scored 18 goals and recorded 29 points last season. He finished second on the Red Wings in even strength goals (17) in 2016-17 and tallied a pair of overtime winners. A good year and with some salary off the books next summer, he can cash in with a longer-term contract. He’ll once again be an RFA next summer, so Detroit will control his rights, but he’ll have arbitration rights.

According to MLive.com’s Ansar Khan, along with the contract Athanasiou has been promised a minutes bump from the 13:27 he played last season, as well as regular time on both special teams units.

Detroit is off to a 4-3-0 start and averaging 3.14 goals per game. Once Athanasiou arrives from Switzerland and gets up to speed — possibly with an AHL conditioning stint — his presence will certainly be a boost to the Red Wings’ lineup.

————

Sean Leahy is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @Sean_Leahy.: