Capitals, Golden Knights at Opposite Ends of 2017-18 Win Totals

washington capitals

Matthew Jordan

Tuesday, August 8, 2017 6:48 PM GMT

NHL players will be reporting to training camp sooner than you think, and the 2017-18 hockey season begins on Oct. 4. BetOnline has rolled out its win totals for the season. We break some down.

No big surprise that the Washington Capitals have the highest 2017-18 NHL betting win total at BetOnline of 50.5, although the ‘under’ is a -130 favorite. The Capitals have won the Presidents’ Trophy each of the past two seasons but have flopped in the playoffs because they always do.

In 2015-16, the Caps set a franchise record with 56 victories on the way to 120 points. They lost in the Eastern Conference semifinals to the eventual Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh Penguins. Last season, the Caps had 55 wins and 118 points but lost in the Eastern Conference semifinals to the eventual Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh Penguins.

Washington superstar Alex Ovechkin still has yet to play in a conference finals. And there’s one thing to note about him when deciding to bet on the Caps’ 2017-18 win total: Whether Ovechkin defies the NHL by going to play for his native Russia in the 2018 Winter Olympics.

The NHL and NHLPA couldn’t work out a deal to shut down the season for a few weeks so players could return to the Games in Pyeongchang. However, Ovechkin says he’s going. That would likely cost him nine regular-season games and that could easily be the difference between ‘over’ or ‘under’ that 50.5 win total. The NHL says it won’t allow any player with an NHL contract to compete, but Ovechkin’s owner, Ted Leonsis, has been on record in saying that if Ovechkin wants to go to the Olympics, he'll support him. Russia likely would be the favorites without professionals from Canada or the United States playing. Ovechkin has represented Russia three times at the Olympics, but has failed to win a medal. He owns eight goals and three assists in 17 games in Olympic play.

Second on the 2017-18 wins list is Edmonton at 47.5, with both options at -115. The Oilers of course are led by reigning Hart Trophy Connor McDavid, who himself slammed the league for not allowing players to go to the Games. Sean Burke, the GM of Team Canada, has said the bulk of Canada's Olympic team will come from players based in Europe. Canada was won gold at three of the last four Olympics, including back-to-back wins in Vancouver (2010) and Sochi (2014).

Led by McDavid’s league-high 100 points, Edmonton won 47 games last season, the franchise’s most since the 1986-87 club had 50 victories in an 80-game season schedule and won a Stanley Cup. Some guy named Gretzky led that team with a ridiculous 183 points.

The NHL record for wins is 62 by the 1995-96 Red Wings. That team didn’t even make the Stanley Cup Finals, but the Wings won it the next two years.

On the low end for wins on NHL futures, Colorado is set at 29.5 and the expansion Vegas Golden Knights with 26.5. The Avalanche finished with by far the fewest last year with 22. They didn’t win three games in a row once. Vegas will join the Pacific Division. The last time the league expanded it added Columbus and Minnesota for the 2000-01 season. The Blue Jackets finished with 28 victories and the Wild 25.

Here’s an alphabetical list of all win totals from BetOnline:

Anaheim Ducks                 46

Arizona Coyotes               33

Boston Bruins                    44.5

Buffalo Sabres                   37

Calgary Flames                  42.5

Carolina Hurricanes         41.5

Chicago Blackhawks        44.5

Colorado Avalanche        29.5

Columbus Blue Jackets  46.5

Dallas Stars                         43.5

Detroit Red Wings            34.5

Edmonton Oilers              47.5

Florida Panthers               38.5

LA Kings                               40.5

Minnesota Wild                 46.5

Montreal Canadiens        44

Nashville Predators         44

New Jersey Devils            31.5

New York Islanders         42.5

New York Rangers           44.5

Ottawa Senators              40

Philadelphia Flyers          38

Pittsburgh Penguins        46.5

San Jose Sharks               43.5

St. Louis Blues                   44.5

Tampa Bay Lightning       44

Toronto Maple Leafs       44.5

Vancouver Canucks         30.5

Vegas Golden Knights     26.5

Washington Capitals       50.5

Winnipeg Jets                    41.5

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