Our resident NHL betting odds expert Ross Benjamin predicted the Los Angeles Kings to win in exactly 5-games during the 2014 Stanley Cup Finals right here at SBR. Read his take on the Kings chances to repeat in 2015.
Los Angeles Kings Future Odds
The 2014 Stanley Cup champions, the Los Angeles Kings, have opened at 10-1 betting odds to repeat in 2015.
Before you jump out of you chair to make a NHL wager, and thinking you’ve encountered an absolute steal, take a deep breath in order to evaluate further. There hasn’t been a repeat Stanley Cup champion since the Detroit Red Wings accomplished the feat in 1998. The Pittsburgh Penguins also were able to turn the trick in 1992. Putting it all into perspective, there’s been no repeat champion over the last 16 years, and there’s only been two over the last 22 postseasons.
Appreciating the Kings 2014 Stanley Cup Run
The Kings had an epic postseason run on their way to winning the Stanley Cup in 2014. They became just the 4th team in NHL history to overcome a 3-0 series deficit during the opening round win over the San Jose Sharks. They overcame a 3-2 series deficit in the Western Conference Semifinals to defeat the Anaheim Ducks. They trailed in the Conference Finals 3-2 to the defending Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks, and won the last 2-games to advance.
The Kings became the first team in NHL history to advance to the Stanley Cup Finals by winning a Game 7 of each of their first 3 playoff rounds. They also went a remarkable 7-0 in games they were facing elimination. Even more impressive was that each of those three Game 7 wins came on the road. Then, in the Stanley Cup Finals, they defeated the Rangers by a 4-1 margin, won 3 of the 4 games in overtime, including a pair of double overtime wins.
If you check the annals of NHL Playoff history you won’t find another team that took a similar path, or had such an improbable run to win hockey’s grand prize.
Unlikely Repeat in 2015
You can never underestimate a team that’s won the Stanley Cup in 2 of the last 3 years, and has advanced to the Conference Finals series for 3 consecutive seasons. Their resume becomes even more impressive when you stop, and think about the fact that they’ve won 10 of the last 11 playoff rounds.
However, unlike their march to win the Stanley Cup in 2012, in which they were more dominant, a lot of fairytale-type sequences occurred for the Kings in 2014. They will once again be one of the best teams in the Western Conference in the upcoming season, but I will go out on a limb to say that a repeat in 2015 is possible, but not probable.