Penguins remain Stanley Cup odds favorites at Olympic Break

Christopher Pasatieri

Pittsburgh remains the Stanley Cup favorite but what happens if Sidney Crosby or Evgeni Malkin get hurt at the Olympics?

The St. Louis Blues have caught up to the Chicago Blackhawks in the Central Division standings heading into the NHL's Olympic break, and they've also passed their rival on the latest odds to win the Stanley Cup at the sportsbooks.

But it's the Pittsburgh Penguins (at +500 according to remaining as favorites to win the Stanley Cup this season, despite losing star defenceman Kris Letang for six weeks.

Those odds put them just ahead of the Blackhawks and Blues - who are both between 6/1 and 7/1. St. Louis enters the break at 39-12-6 with 84 points on the season, while Chicago is 35-11-14 with 84 points.

Pittsburgh is 40-15-3 with 83 points, and has a huge lead in the Metropolitan Division standings. It's the Anaheim Ducks, however, that lead the NHL with 87 points (41-14-5) at the break, but that only has them third at +675 on the latest Stanley Cup odds at the sportsbooks.

With so much parity among the top five or six teams, Stanley Cup future odds look quite different when compared sportsbook to sportsbook.

"Some bettors like to take advantage of tournaments like the Olympics to lock in a few longshot wagers, because its always possible for an injury to knock a top contender out of place," said Jack Randall of

The Boston Bruins, who lead the Atlantic Division with 78 points (37-16-4), are also in the mix at +650 with the San Jose Sharks at 11/1 on those odds. California rivals Los Angeles were pegged at +2350 odds.

The Colorado Avalanche, Toronto Maple Leafs, and New York Rangers all sit around 25/1. The Tampa Bay Lightning are 20/1 while the Philadelphia Flyers are tempting long shots at 50/1 as they hit the break on a winning streak. The Montreal Canadiens at 27/1 on those odds.

The Detroit Red Wings (+4500) and the Washington Capitals (+6500), both in danger of missing the playoffs in the Eastern Conference. The Columbus Blue Jackets, Minnesota Wild, and Vancouver Canucks farther back at 50/1 odds or higher.

Longshots on the Stanley Cup odds that will be trying to break into the NHL's playoff picture when the league resumes play in a couple of weeks include the Carolina Hurricanes, New Jersey Devils, Ottawa Senators, Phoenix Coyotes and Dallas Stars, all at +5500 or higher.

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