The West is indeed wild, with a number of surprises in the NHL’s Western Conference so far this season. On the positive side, Vegas has bounced back in a big way under new bench boss Bruce Cassidy. The Seattle Kraken have taken a huge step forward thanks to some sound drafting and the play of Calder favorite Matty Beniers.
On the negative side, Colorado’s injury problems have derailed their season as they sit in the bottom half of the conference standings. The Edmonton Oilers are floundering with their big goalie acquisition this offseason not paying off. And the Nashville Predators have taken a huge step back after an impressive 2021-22 campaign.
Because of all those surprises, positive or negative, there’s some value to be had on Western Conference odds.
New to betting on hockey? We have a great betting guide for you as well as an excellent sportsbook review so you can place your bet with confidence. While you’re browsing our other NHL betting content, take a look at Stanley Cup odds and our computer picks for every game.
2022-23 NHL Western Conference Odds
|Vegas Golden Knights||+350|
|Los Angeles Kings||+1500|
|St. Louis Blues||+2800|
|San Jose Sharks||+20000|
Odds as of January 5 at Sportsbook
Colorado Avalanche (+250)
I have my doubts about Colorado being the favorite here, mainly because they aren’t in a playoff position right now. They aren’t far off, mind you. Edmonton is only one point ahead of Colorado for the final wild-card spot and Colorado has three games in hand. But with injuries to Gabriel Landeskog and Valeri Nichushkin, the Avs are in a tough spot to challenge for a playoff spot.
I get that Colorado is the defending champion and when healthy, the Avs are a force. But they aren’t healthy and that’s putting them in a hole they might not be able to climb out of when they do get everyone back. They shouldn’t be the favorite here.
Vegas Golden Knights (+350)
Even with injuries to Mark Stone, Jack Eichel, Robin Lehner, Shea Theodore and Jonathan Marchessault, the Golden Knights keep on winning. Jack Adams contender Bruce Cassidy has his team buzzing and barely missing a beat with key players out of the lineup.
When he gets Eichel, Marchessault and Theodore back, this team could easily march to the Western Conference final and win it. At +350, this is a good bet to make.
Los Angeles Kings (+1500)
The Kings have issues defensively with the sixth-most goals against in the NHL (139). But their offense is making up for that poor defense with 131 goals (T-6 overall).
Defensively, though, they’ve started to figure it out. Since December 1, they’re up to 16th in terms of goals allowed per game at 3.06. That’s a big reduction compared to the 3.60 goals per game they allowed from October through November.
If the Kings remember they’re a good defensive team, and it seems that they just might have, they could take the Western Conference this year.
Last 10 Western Conference Champions
|2019||St. Louis Blues||+1300|
|2018||Vegas Golden Knights||+9250|
|2016||San Jose Sharks||+1850|
|2014||Los Angeles Kings||+500|
|2012||Los Angeles Kings||+600|
Note the 2020-21 season is not listed as divisions were realigned due to COVID-19.
There have been few upsets when it comes to Western Conference odds. The obvious exception there is Vegas in 2018 at +9250. No one had any clue that the first-year team could go on that Cinderella-like run and win the Western Conference. A team essentially comprised of rejects from their previous NHL clubs banded together and defied the odds.
That type of run, as you can see from the table, doesn’t happen often. So when betting on Western Conference futures, don’t stray too far from the chalk.
How To Bet On Western Conference Odds
This is a bet in which you would look at the Western Conference odds well in advance of the final game of the Western Conference final and back a specific team to win the conference. Let’s say you want to make a futures bet today at your sportsbook of choice. The Western Conference odds might look something like this:
For Western Conference futures, the team with the lowest odds is favored to win, and the rest are underdogs.
Let’s say you feel strongly about the Vegas Golden Knights winning the conference for the second time in franchise history. If you were to bet $100 on them and they ended up winning it, you’d get a payout of $600 – your original $100 is returned along with your winnings of $500. Our odds calculator will show you how much you’d win based on the odds and amount bet.
When looking at Western Conference futures, you want to find a team that has three things:
Find all three in a single team and you have a strong candidate for a Western Conference champion the following year.