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Avalanche now favored to win the Stanley Cup

Profile Picture: Cam Tucker

April 1st, 2021

The Colorado Avalanche have been on a serious run in the NHL’s West Division, and as of Thursday afternoon, have the shortest odds to win the Stanley Cup. 

Colorado's +450 odds place the club just ahead of the Tampa Bay Lightning, who are listed at +500 to repeat as champs. 

NHL Championship 2020/2021

Tue, May 11 2021, 3:58 AM

Colorado Avalanche

+450

Tampa Bay Lightning

+500

Vegas Golden Knights

+800

Toronto Maple Leafs

+900

Carolina Hurricanes

+1200

Washington Capitals

+1300

New York Islanders

+1400

Boston Bruins

+1600

Montreal Canadiens

+1700

Minnesota Wild

+1800

Stopping the Avs offense a nearly impossible task

Colorado isn't just winning games, it is making most victories look incredibly easy. 

Ten wins from the last 12 games has been no fluke. 

Colorado has scored at least five goals or more in seven of those 12 games, including eight goals against Anaheim on March 16, and nine goals on Arizona earlier this week. 

The Avs are scoring at such a clip, in part because they dominate the play at even strength. According to Natural Stat Trick, the Avalanche control 58% of shot attempts at even strength, as well as 60% of goals and 59% of expected goals in five-on-five situations. 

Shot attempts, shots, goals, scoring chances — Colorado is firmly in control of those metrics at even strength, and that should make the Avs an easy favorite to win just about every game on the schedule, provided the team is healthy. 

As discussed last week, the Avalanche appeared to be a good bet to win the West. At the time, the team was behind the Vegas Golden Knights but faced a pivotal two-game set with the division rival that was key to deciding the outcome of the division. A week ago, Colorado had the second-lowest odds to win the division, at +105, which means a $25 wager would have a potential payout of nearly $52. 

Since then, Colorado has overtaken Vegas for the top spot in the division, although the Golden Knights have a game in hand.

Vegas may have the best chance to upend the Avalanche in the postseason. The challenge will be to slow down Colorado's dominant offensive attack, something teams have struggled mightily with this season. 

Upcoming schedule offers few challenges for Avs

The Avs have an opportunity, with their upcoming schedule, to continue this hot streak. 

Colorado has six games against St. Louis this month, which presents a challenge, but the Blues are struggling, with two wins in their last 10 games. Colorado also has only two more regular-season matchups against Vegas.

Those games, at the end of April, could still be important in the divisional standings, but there aren’t many teams remaining on Colorado’s schedule that provide the same skill or team speed.

The Avs seems poised to continue their run, and with the start of the playoffs only about six weeks away, it will take a significant slowdown for another team to overtake Colorado in the Stanley Cup outright odds. 

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