The Boston Bruins, Tampa Bay Lightning and Vegas Golden Knights are co-favorites in the updated odds to win the Stanley Cup at Caesars Sportsbook, as the NHL attempts to pull off an unorthodox finish to its season.
The NHL announced Tuesday that the top 24 teams when play was suspended March 12 will get a shot at an expanded Stanley Cup playoff -- if the season can be resumed.
NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said settling on a playoff format does not guarantee games are coming back, and fundamental details such as where the games will be played are undetermined, in addition to health and safety protocols.
The Bruins, Golden Knights and Lightning are each 6-1 to win the Stanley Cup at Caesars Sportsbook. The Colorado Avalanche are 8-1, followed by the defending champion St. Louis Blues at 9-1 and Washington Capitals at 11-1.
Prior to the stoppage, the Bruins were the solo favorites to win the Cup, slightly ahead of the Golden Knights and Lightning.
Jeff Davis, director of trading for Caesars Sportsbook, said the announced format benefited Vegas and Tampa Bay, teams that will be part of separate, four-team, round-robin tournaments to decide the top seeds in the Western and Eastern conferences, respectively.
The remaining 16 teams will be seeded by conference and play best-of-five series.
The expanded format brings some long-shot teams into the mix, including the Montreal Canadiens, who were nine points out of the playoffs in March and listed at 500-1 to win the Stanley Cup before play was halted.
The Canadiens are the biggest underdogs in the best-of-series, opening at +165 vs. the Pittsburgh Penguins at Caesars Sportsbook.