Will Toronto hoist the Stanley Cup Trophy?
An NHL team from Canada has not won a Stanley Cup title since 1993. Can the Toronto Maple Leafs be the team that ends that long drought this season?
According to oddsmakers, the Tampa Bay Lightning have the best odds to win the Stanley Cup at 6/1. The Las Vegas Golden Knights come in next at 15/2, while both the Colorado Avalanche and the Maple Leafs are set at 10/1. The Boston Bruins have odds at 12/1. Four teams - the Dallas Stars, Florida Panthers, San Jose Sharks and St. Louis Blues - all have odds at 16/1. A full list of teams can be found at our NHL Future Odds Page.
Tampa Bay Lightning
The Lightning were awesome during the regular season last year as they racked up a 62-16-4 record, but collapsed in the postseason as they were shockingly swept by the Columbus Blue Jackets and outscored 19-8 in the series. Nikita Kucherov, who got injured during the playoffs, led Tampa Bay in scoring last season with 41 goals and 87 assists. Veteran captain Steven Stamkos came in next with 45 goals and 53 assists. Brayden Point notched 41 goals and 51 assists. Andrei Vasilevskiy will resume his duties as No.1 goaltender after he went 39-10-4 with a 2.40 goals-against average and ,925 save percentage.
Las Vegas Golden Knights
The Golden Knights took a step back last season as they finished the regular season 43-32-7 before bowing out in the first round of the Western Conference Playoffs against San Jose as they blew a 3-1 series lead with a 5-4 overtime road loss in Game 7. Las Vegas returns a strong core that was balanced offensively with Jonathan Marchessault (25G, 34A), William Karlsson 24G, 32A), Reilly Smith (19G, 34A) and Alex Tuch (20G, 32A) leading the way. Back at goaltender will be veteran Marc-Andre Fleury after he finished 35-21-5 last season with a 2.51 goals-against average and .913 save percentage.
After finishing the regular season with a 38-30-14 record, the Avs took a major step forward in the playoffs as they downed top seed Calgary in five games before falling to San Jose in seven games in the semifinals with a 3-2 road loss in Game 7. Colorado boasts one of the NHL's best young players in Nathan MacKinnon as he will hope to build off a regular season in which he tallied 41 goals and 58 assists. Mikko Rantanen, who just agreed to a long-term extension is coming off a season with 31 goals and 56 assists. Gabriel Landeskog added 34 goals and 41 assists. Philipp Grubauer will handle No. 1 goalie duties after going 18-9-5 with a 2.64 GAA and .917 save percentage last season.
Toronto Maple Leafs
The Maple Leafs finished the regular season last year 46-28-8, but fell short in the playoffs as they lost in seven games to Boston with a 5-1 road defeat ending their season. Toronto has a very promising future, however, as long as it can shore up some holes. Center Mitch Marner led the way with 26 goals and 68 assists, while fellow centers John Tavares (47G, 41A) and Auston Matthews 37G, 36A) will also produce heavily again this season. Frederik Andersen will be back in net after going 36-16-7 with a 2.77 GAA and .917 save percentage in 2018-19. Expect Toronto to make a step forward this season as it makes strides on the defensive end and the units have had more time to gel.
The Bruins withstood a number of injuries last season and were never truly healthy, but advanced to the Stanley Cup Finals regardless. Boston finished the regular season 49-24-9 before besting the Maple Leafs in seven games in the first round of the playoffs. The strong run continued in the second round as they downed Columbus in six games before taking down Carolina in a clean sweep. In a back-and-forth seven-game Stanley Cup Finals series, Boston fell short as it lost 4-1 at home against St. Louis in Game 7. Brad Marchand paced the Bruins last year with 36 goals and 64 assists over 79 games. David Pastrnak contributed 38 goals and 43 assists over 66 games. Tuukka Rask enters another season as Boston's starting goalie after going 27-13-5 last year with a 2.48 GAA and .912 save percentage.
The Stars went 43-32-7 last season and won its first round playoff matchup in six games over Nashville. Dallas took eventual Stanley Cup champion St. Louis to seven games in the conference semifinals before losing a 2-1 heartbreaker in double overtime on the road to end its season. Tyler Seguin led the Stars in scoring last season with 33 goals and 47 assists, while Alexander Radulov accounted for 29 goals and 43 assists. Ben Bishop will return as starting goalie after a stellar 2018-19 campaign in which he went 27-15-2 with a 1.98 GAA and .934 save percentage.
The Panthers went 36-32-14 during the regular season in 2018-19 and did not qualify for the playoffs. With a promising young core and a busy offseason, Florida is expected to take a step forward this season but it remains to be seen how far it can go in the tough Eastern Conference.
San Jose Sharks
The Sharks always seem to be on the brink but fall a bit short once the postseason comes around. Last year was no different as they went 46-27-9 during the regular season before rallying from a 3-1 deficit to down Las Vegas in seven games in the first round of the Western Conference Playoffs. San Jose proceeded to top Colorado in seven games in the semifinals before losing in seven games to eventual champion St. Louis. Defenseman Brent Burns paced San Jose in the scoring department as he notched 16 goals and 67 assists, while Tomas Hertl tallied 35 goals and 39 assists. Logan Couture added 27 goals and 43 assists. Martin Jones resumes his role as starting goaltender after notching a 39-19-5 record, 2.94 GAA and .986 save percentage.
After a rough start to the season, the Blues called up rookie goaltender Jordan Binnington more than two months in and the rest was history. St. Louis ended up going 45-28-9 in the regular season and downed Winnipeg in six games in the first round of the Western Conference Playoffs. The Blues then topped Dallas in seven games with a 2-1 double OT home win in Game 7 capping it off, while they then proceeded to best San Jose in six games in the conference finals. St. Louis finished it off by downing Boston in the Stanley Cup Finals, winning Game 7 by a count of 4-1 on the road. Binnington ended his regular season last year with a 24-5-1 record, 1.89 GAA and .927 save percentage and will get the majority of the starts between the pipes in 2019-20. Ryan O'Reilly led the Blues' offense with 28 goals and 49 assists before enjoying a fantastic postseason, while Vladimir Tarasenko contributed 33 goals and 35 assists.