There is nothing like the Stanley Cup playoffs.
The emotional and physical toll it takes to win the 16 games to claim the Stanley Cup is unlike any in the wide world of sports.
But now, with players locked in a “bubble” away from family and friends during the middle of a pandemic, you really can say there has never been anything like this Stanley Cup playoffs.
It may have taken four months to get here, but let the fun (and NHL betting) finally begin.
First up for the Colorado Avalanche on their Mission 16W is the Arizona Coyotes in the Western Conference quarterfinals. Mission 16W is what Hall of Fame defenseman Ray Bourque called Colorado’s 2001 quest for the Cup. That’s also the last time the Avalanche won the Stanley Cup.
— Colorado Avalanche (@Avalanche) August 11, 2020
Avalanche vs. Coyotes schedule
The first game in the best-of-seven series is at 3:30 p.m. MST Wednesday, Aug. 12.
Since the sports betting Colorado market launched on May 1, this is the first chance for sports fans to bet on the NHL playoffs.
As was the case for the round-robin and qualifying round games, all Western Conference quarterfinal playoff games will be played in Edmonton, Alberta. All Eastern Conference quarterfinal playoff games are set for Toronto.
Colorado went 2-0-1 in the round-robin seeding games to claim the No. 2 seed in the West. The Las Vegas Golden Knights are the No. 1 seed and face the Chicago Blackhawks in the quarterfinals.
|Avalanche vs Coyotes NHL playoffs quarterfinals schedule||Time (MST)||Date||TV||Radio|
|Game One||3:30 p.m.||Wednesday, Aug. 12||NBCSN/Altitude TV||Altitude Radio|
|Game Two||Noon||Friday, Aug. 14||NHL Network/Altitude TV||Altitude Radio|
|Game Three||1 p.m.||Saturday, Aug. 15||CNBC/Altitude TV||Altitude Radio|
|Game Four||3:30 p.m.||Monday, Aug. 17||NBCSN/Altitude TV||Altitude Radio|
|Game Five (if necessary)||TBD||Wednesday, Aug. 19||TBD||Altitude Radio|
|Game Six (if necessary)||TBD||Friday, Aug. 21||TBD||Altitude Radio|
|Game Seven (if necessary)||TBD||Sunday, Aug. 23||TBD||Altitude Radio|
Game line odds and series odds
|Avalanche vs Coyotes Games One odds||DraftKings||FanDuel||BetMGM|
|Point spread||Avalanche -1.5 +150|
Coyotes +1.5 -210
|Avalanche -1.5 +155|
Coyotes +1.5 -180
|Avalanche -1.5 +150
Coyotes -1.5 -182
|Total goals scored||Over 5.5 -107|
Under 5.5 -114
|Over 5.5 +100|
Under 5.5 -120
|Over 5.5 -106
Under 5.5 -115
The three sportsbooks also have Colorado as the favorite to win the series.
|Avalanche vs Coyotes NHL playoffs quarterfinals odds||DraftKings||FanDuel||BetMGM|
|Series winner||Avalanche -286|
Stanley Cup odds
Now that the Avalanche are the No. 2 seed in the West after their three round-robin games, DraftKings, FanDuel and BetMGM have Colorado equal to or slightly behind the Golden Knights to win the Cup and the West. The Philadelphia Flyers are also a favorite for the Cup and to win the East.
|Colorado Avalanche odds||DraftKings||FanDuel||BetMGM|
|NHL Western Conference winner||Golden Knights +250|
|Golden Knights +250|
Golden Knights +260
|Stanley Cup winner — top five||Flyers +550|
Golden Knights +550
Golden Knights +600
Golden Knights +800
Conn Smythe Trophy odds
If you’re looking for a futures betting option that involves Avalanche players, center Nathan MacKinnon is the favorite on DraftKings and BetMGM to win the Conn Smythe Trophy (the MVP of the playoffs).
|Odds to win the Conn Smythe Trophy||DraftKings||BetMGM|
|Conn Smythe Trophy winner — top five||Nathan MacKinnon +550|
Brad Marchand +1,000
Carter Hart +1,100
Patrice Bergeron +1,200
Andre Vasilevskiy +1,200
Robin Lehner +1,200
Brayden Point +1,300
Mark Stone +1,300
Nazem Kadri +1,300
|Nathan MacKinnon +900
Tuuka Rask +1,200
Carter Hart +1,300
Nikita Kucherov +1,500
Max Pacioretty +1,500
David Pastrnak +1,600
Stanley Cup playoff experience
What helps Colorado in this situation is experience.
This is the third-straight season the Avalanche have qualified for the playoffs, so this isn’t their first rodeo. With that comes motivation from a tough loss.
Colorado made it to seven games in its Western Conference semifinal series against the San Jose Sharks. The Avs lost in Game Seven.
Yes, Colorado wasn’t even supposed to make it out of the quarterfinal series against the Calgary Flames, but losing in Game Seven sticks with you.
The Avalanche want to turn that into a deep playoff run that ends with them skating for the Cup.
Very few times does an opportunity present itself to become the best. Colorado knows what’s in front of it — a legitimate shot at the Stanley Cup. Now it’s time to make it happen.
As MacKinnon said to the team website:
“I think, with experience, you feel better and better. I think for everyone in our group, every year you play in the NHL you realize you don’t have many chances and for me, this feels like my first real chance to win, which really excites me and I think it excites everyone. Obviously, it is not easy to get in this position, we are second in the West and that is kind of where we finished if there wasn’t a qualifier and the round robin or whatever for our team. Personally, I feel comfortable. This is my fourth playoffs now and third straight obviously with everyone else, but I feel good and hopefully, I can be a key guy in the first round.”