posted on April 16, 2014 07:32
Las Vegas Loves The Blues
Honestly, I thought this was a mistake.
But, I followed up with my contact at Bovada.lv, and he said it was not:
The Blues are the favorites to win the Western Conference.
Here are the latest lines from Bovada.lv on the Stanley Cup Playoffs:
St. Louis Blues 5/2
Chicago Blackhawks 15/4
San Jose Sharks 9/2
Anaheim Ducks 5/1
Los Angeles Kings 6/1
Colorado Avalanche 13/2
Minnesota Wild 18/1
Dallas Stars 22/1
Yes, the Blues, the team with the six-game losing streak, are 5:2 favorites to win the Western Conference and play for the Stanley Cup.
We did a poll on insideSTL.com Monday asking fans what they expected to happen in the Blues-Blackhawks’ series, and 80% picked the Blackhawks to win the series.
But, in Las Vegas, they’re not only giving the Blues the edge in the playoffs over the Blackhawks, they’re the odds-on favorite to win three series.
I’ll be honest…I’m confused.
The only thing I can think of that is going on here is that Bovada.lv’s oddsmakers think the Blues will turn back into the team we saw through mid-March when Thursday rolls around…and the boys are back healthy.
Well, that…or they just don’t pay attention to hockey.
But, these guys set odds for everything.
Hell, the over/under for Derek Roy’s first round points is three. If they’ve got that, they’ve got to have knowledge on the very obvious futures bet of most likely team to win the West.
But, it’s not just the West.
The Bruins at 7:2 are the only team with better odds than the Blues to win the whole damn thing.
So, in St. Louis, 80% of insideSTL voters don’t think the team will make it out of the first round…and in Las Vegas, they’ve got them in the Stanley Cup Finals.
Am I taking crazy pills?
I turned to my hockey guys, The Non-Gay and Brien With An E Rea.
From The Nonling:
“I'm honestly surprised by it. Even when the Blues were healthy and clicking there would have been legitimate questions about whether they could beat LA, Anaheim, or San Jose in a 7 game series. Now there are just too many variables working against the Blues including the absence of some players due to injury, the effectiveness of other players coming back from or playing through injury, and the toll of having to play Chicago and then potentially Colorado to even get to the Western Conference finals. Assuming they get healthy quickly, this team wouldn't shock the world by winning the West, but the cards are stacked pretty heavily against them as of right now.”
From Brien With An E Rea:
1. Vegas has not jumped ship yet on the Blues because of their body of work over the course of the year, their season record against Chicago, and the fact that hockey teams hide injury news at playoff time like WikiLeaks is trying to find it. There are still two days until Game 1, and Ken Hitchcock has already gone on record that he believes everyone will participate in some part of this series. One thing to also note is repeating as Stanley Cup champions is one of the most difficult things to do in sports. The Hawks have had their injury concerns as well, even though not as dramatic as the Blues. So why not St. Louis to knock off the defending champion. History says someone has to do it.
2. You know Vegas odds much better than I do, but if the odds haven’t changed after the losing streak, the injuries, and the shaky play… then Vegas is trying to dictate something with where the public money is going. I’m not exactly sure where they are trying to direct it. But you see the odds change all the time on sporting events because of where the public money goes. That means there could be an opposite effect in that the odds haven’t changed because maybe there isn’t a lot of public money that ever fell on the Blues this year. If Vegas is choosing to do something, or not do something, it’s because it gives them the best chance to profit.
3. Outside of the NCAA Tournament, the NHL playoffs might carry the largest variable of “randomness” that hits. You can’t predict random. So why change the odds.
When I posted these odds on Twitter last night, many thought they were a mistake.
But, they’re not.
Now, whether or not they should be is subjective.
I often think Las Vegas knows something we don’t know. They wouldn’t have all of those five-star hotels out there if they didn’t.
Let’s hope they do when it comes to the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs.
Log-in to post your comments, or you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.