We’re right at the midway point of the National Hockey League season and three teams have outperformed their peers–at least in their ability to put money in the pockets of the betting public. In this article, we’ll look at the three NHL teams that have made the most money at the betting window. Later this week, we’ll call out the teams that have done the most damage to betting bankrolls.
NEW YORK ISLANDERS +8.5 UNITS
The public just can’t wrap their head around the reality that the Islanders have not only survived by have been able to thrive despite longtime team leader John Tavares taking his act to Toronto. Last year–their first without Tavares–they racked up 103 points and finished second in the Metropolitan Division just one point behind the Washington Capitals. This year, they’re on pace to exceed that point total. Earlier this year, the Islanders went 17 games without a regulation loss going 15-0-2 during that stretch. They’ve cooled off a bit since then but are still the #4 scoring defense in hockey allowing just 2.59 goals against per game. The Islanders have been the perfect combination of being undervalued by the betting public and being successful on the ice. That’s the ticket for continued profit as a betting proposition.
WASHINGTON CAPITALS +7.7 UNITS
Where have we seen this story before? The Washington Capitals started the season in red hot form and for a time looked as if they were going to run away with not only the Metropolitan Division and Eastern Conference title but the President’s Trophy as well. They lost only three of their first 23 games in regulation winning 16 of those games. They’ve cooled off a bit since mid-December and that has given the Boston Bruins and St. Louis Blues to pull within two points of the league leading Capitals. Washington has shown that they’re capable of going on a massive run and opening up some serious separation with the rest of the league. The Caps are top ten in both scoring offense and defense and have the #3 penalty kill in the league. They’ve also got the #11 power play. Teams that excel in all four of these areas have a tendency to win a lot of hockey games.
ST. LOUIS BLUES +6.5 UNITS
The Blues are the only other team in the league with more than +5 units of profit on the season. St. Louis started the season winning only 3 of their first 8 games. This had the result of getting the betting public off of the Stanley Cup Champions’ bandwagon and made them a decent betting value. At that point, they started to win–they won 9 of their next 10 games. The Blues have been a maddeningly streaky team–they ended November winning 4 straight, then lost three straight. They ended December winning eight straight and as of this writing have lost three straight. Statistically, they’re very similar to the Islanders with a top flight defense and a serviceable offense. Also worth noting that they’re without Vladimir Tarasenko who is out indefinitely with an upper body injury.