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NHL East Division Odds: Bruins on Top in Stacked Division

Luke Konecny of the Philadelphia Flyers works the puck around Tukka Rask of the Boston Bruins.

Hockey is back! The 2021 NHL season is set to get underway on January 13 under unprecedented circumstances as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, and the league has created four temporary divisions to minimize travel: the East, North, West and Central.

So, which teams have the best odds to win the East Division? At online sportsbook Bovada, the Boston Bruins are the +250 favorites, followed by the Philadelphia Flyers (+350), Pittsburgh Penguins (+450), Washington Capitals (+500), New York Islanders (+650), New York Rangers (+700), Buffalo Sabres (+1600) and New Jersey Devils (+2800).

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NHL East Division Odds

Odds to Win the 2021 East Division
Boston Bruins+250
Philadelphia Flyers+350
Pittsburgh Penguins+450
Washington Capitals+500
New York Islanders+650
New York Rangers+700
Buffalo Sabres+1600
New Jersey Devils+2800

Odds as of January 13 at Bovada

Bruins, Sabres Enter East Division

The division realignment has seen the Columbus Blue Jackets and Carolina Hurricanes leave in favor of the Central Division, while the Bruins and Sabres are taking their places in the East. 

For this year, four teams from each division will make the postseason. That’s going to make the East as competitive as it’s been in quite some time with a litany of talent across the board.

Boston caught a bit of a break not having to deal with the Tampa Bay Lightning or Toronto Maple Leafs this year, and based on the Bruins’ past success, it makes sense to see them as the favorites.

Boston didn’t do much on the free-agent market, though, and defensemen Torey Krug and Zdeno Chara departed the team via free agency. The Bruins might be a tad overvalued at their current price.

Plenty of Value on Capitals

This is potentially the hardest division to win in hockey, as there are roughly six teams that have a real shot at winning it. To me, the +500 price on Washington is too good to ignore given the talent on the roster.

Washington lost longtime goaltender Braden Holtby to the Vancouver Canucks in free agency, which means the crease now belongs solely to 23-year-old Ilya Samsonov. Samsonov is a star in the making and should have no issue excelling in a starting role, so don’t worry about the situation between the pipes, even without the newly signed Henrik Lundqvist around this year.

Peter Laviolette, who was brought in to replace the fired Todd Reirden after their playoff elimination in the fall, is a great coach and will have the Caps playing much more disciplined hockey than they showed in the bubble.