The Golden Knights and Capitals just concluded one of the most memorable seasons in NHL history.
Can Vegas complete what it began next year or would the young franchise come crashing back to earth?
Who are the early favorites for the Hart Trophy, Vezina Trophy, Norris Trophy, and all the important 2019 NHL awards?
The 2018 Stanley Cup is in the novels and the Washington Capitals have, for the first time in franchise history, etched their name onto the storied trophy, setting a catastrophic end to the storybook run of this expansion Vegas Golden Knights.
As we look to 2019, the central question on everyone’s mind is if Vegas was a fluke or whether they will be contenders for years to come.
Partial answers lie under, as our NHL number crunchers tabulate the first odds for the 2018-19 NHL year, including Stanley Cup futures, player-award chances, and more.The Stanley Cup playoffs are a crapshoot. Dominant regular-season teams often find themselves bounced by Wild Cards that barely squeaked in. Case in point: just one team has captured both the Presidents’ Trophy (most points in the regular season) and the cup in the previous decade (2012-13 Blackhawks), and it’s only occurred eight times from the 32-year history of the Presidents’ Trophy.
[O]nly 1 group… has captured both the Presidents’ Trophy (most points in the regular season) and the cup in the last ten years.
Case in point #2: the Capitals were undoubtedly the best team in the regular season in the 2015-16 and 2016-17, but it was not until this year — when they finished with the sixth-best album in the NHL along with the tenth-best goal gap — which they eventually attained the ultimate prize.
That said, there’s definitely a top grade of eight teams when it comes to the 2019 Stanley Cup, which finishes with Vegas in the listing above. By our calculations, there’s a 55 percent likelihood that a group with that octet wins the cup.
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