The current odds or the Vegas Golden Knights to win the 2018 Stanley Cup at South Point Race and Sportsbook speaks more to the excitement the team has brought to the locals. Rather than the actually likelihood that the expansion skaters can actually raise Lord Stanley‘s Cup next June. Odds to Win 2018 Stanley Cup: Vegas 20-to-1.
Vegas went into Toronto on Monday with a 9-4-0 record on the season. With 19 points and second place in the Pacific standings. Before referee Brian Pochmara dropped the puck at Air Canada Centre the Knights trailed the Los Angeles Kings by just three points in the division.
AAC in Ontario had 19,000-plus fans in attendance not to just watch their Maple Leafs but to see the newest addition to the National Hockey League. The team’s current record far exceeds expectations for this or any expansion team. Vegas was a near plus-200 on the money line to win their 10th game of the 2017-18 campaign. The results Monday night, however, were in favor of the Leafs, a 4-3 shootout victory for Toronto.
The Golden Knights fell behind 3-1 after the first period. Vegas fought back to tie the score on a third-period goal by Deryk Engelland. The 6:16 goal by Engelland and assist of Shea Theodore forced overtime. In this day and age of expansion it is most notable to mention that your father’s first-year clubs didn’t resemble that of what the Golden Knights roster. Vegas simply isn’t your typical expansion team. General Manager George McPhee has said from the outset that his team would be competitive and do everything in their front office power to not be old-school expansion doormats.
The current Knights roster is filled with capable skaters, player personnel that were on the verge of breaking through talented and experienced rosters. The Vegas coaching staff have pushed the right buttons. They have found different ways and different lines to succeed on a nightly basis. Consequently the players believe. Now the Vegas faithful have witnessed the talent that McPhee has brought to Sin City and they too are sold. The Toronto fan base knew they picked up a quality skater in last summer’s expansion draft. Now-Vegas LW Brendan Leipsic was picked from the Maple Leafs in the June 21 expansion selection process.
The aforementioned GM-speak is not only expected but should be applauded. It also should be served with a dose of reality. The Vegas skaters have been successful playing four different goaltenders in combination with a large number of young players that don’t know they are expected to lose.
In a little over three week the Knights have won nine games, rest in the second spot in the Pacific standings, and have moved from being 150-to-1 at South Point to raise the Stanley Cup to a current 20-to-1.
Viewing a handful of expansion franchises over the last two-plus decades has been a learning experience. Regardless of the success of previous first-year clubs I have viewed they didn’t exhibit a championship feel. No matter how successful they were in small segments of the season they just weren’t eye-candy on a nightly basis. While the Vegas record and the spot in the standings are real, reality, has yet to sink in. The bare naked truth is that this Vegas Golden Knights team will eventually fade into the 2017-18 regular season sunset. But that doesn’t diminish what they have done. It also doesn’t take away from the young talent and what they are capable of doing in the future.
Not only are the Vegas players competing above and beyond expectations the locals believe the same by moving the NHL future odds on their lone local professional franchise.
South Point Odds to Win 2018 Stanley Cup updates:
Odds to Win 2018 Stanley Cup: Vegas 20-to-1