Betting Lines Changed After NHL Announcement
The recent confirmation received from NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman regarding a changed-format season return plan to be applied to the remainder of the 2019-2020 season is having far-reaching consequences, including major changes to NHL betting lines. This according to information reported by PlayUSA network’s TheLines.com.
The NHL has not yet confirmed the actual date pegged for resumption of play and this is supposedly still up in the air due to the uncertain nature of the trajectory of the trigger that was responsible for the stop-play hiatus. The league was however able to provide a basic layout relating to a 24-team Stanley Cup Playoffs format (of a total of 31 teams), to consist of 4 phases, of which the first is basically to isolate, and with the final phase involving the top 4 teams in each conference competing against one another in a round-robin-style mini-tournament for the purpose of determining each team’s seeding for the 1st round of the 2020 NHL Playoffs.
No Changes To Best-Of Rules
The remaining 8 teams in each conference have already been seeded based on points earned before the hiatus, which has been in force since around the middle of March. The remaining teams will be made to match up in a format involving a best-out-of-5 series, leading to a post-season spot up for the taking. Both the Stanley Cup Final as well as the Conference Finals will according to Bettman remain true to the rules of best-of-7.
According to TheLines.com betting analyst Brett Collson, the announced new format awards a definite advantage to those 4 teams emerging top-seeded in both conferences. What’s more, said Collson, the updated betting lines necessarily reflect that advantage.
Futures Streaming In
Needless to say, sports bettors are among those most passionately waiting on the NHL’s long-overdue return – a dynamic sports books would naturally be interested in making the most of by releasing a host of lines based specifically on the hockey league’s announcement.
Bookies are already seeing big money flowing in on futures bets, even despite there having not yet been concrete return dates announced. As far as the two Stanley Cup favourites go, the two teams pegged for the lifting of the Cup have not surprisingly remained unchanged: Tampa Bay Lightning and the Boston Bruins.
This doesn’t mean that the odds haven’t dropped slightly in both cases. Bettors will now be playing both teams at +650, as opposed to +600 having applied earlier on this year in March. And a significant shift can be seen when considering Western Conference team No. 2, The Colorado Avalanche. The team came in at +900 odds to win it all on the back end of the regular season and has now been bumped all the way up to +700 on the latest post-announcement betlines.