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The defending Stanley Cup champions are still alive in the playoffs, as is the team that had the best overall record in the 2013 NHL season. Both needed Game 7 wins to survive and advance to the conference finals. But that is exactly what the Los Angeles Kings and the Chicago Blackhawks did on Wednesday night. Now, these two teams will meet in the Western Conference Finals, with a berth in the Stanley Cup Finals on the line.
As for the East side of the equation, there was far less drama in the semifinal series, as both were decided in just five games. The top-seeded Pittsburgh Penguins will take on the Boston Bruins.
Both conference finals series begin on Saturday.
Before the the 2013 Stanley Cup Playoffs starts, oddsmakers came out with betting odds to win the championship. At the top of the list of Stanley Cup favorites were the Blackhawks and the Penguins, the two No.1 seeds in the postseason. Both remain alive, and are just a series away from meeting head-to-head. But it’s a safe bet that the Kings and Bruins will have a lot to say about that before it’s all said and done.
With the conference finals set to begin over the weekend, Bovada Sportsbook has once again reformed the betting lines to win the Stanley Cup, as they have at the start of each round in the playoffs so far.
To no surprise, Pittsburgh and Chicago are on top. however, there has been some separation between the Penguins and the Blackhawks, after being tied at the start of the postseason and the conference semifinals. This is probably due to the Penguins dominating the Ottawa Senators, and Chicago having to come from behind to beat Detroit.
At 3/2, Pittsburgh is now the outright favorite to win the championship, while a wager on the Blackhawks is now paying out more than 2 to 1, as they are set at 12/5.
Neither the Kings, nor the Bruins are out of the picture though. In fact, a bet on the defending champions to knock off Chicago and then the Eastern Conference winner is set at 10/3, which is slightly more than a 3 to 1 payout.
Boston is the last of the four on the odds, making them the biggest underdog. But at 9/2, they aren’t very far back, and could give Pittsburgh a real run in the East.
The West Finals get going first on Saturday, with a 5pm ET start on the NBC Sports Network. Boston and Pittsburgh then get going in their Game 1 at 8pm ET, with coverage on NBC. LatestBettingOdds.com will be on the coverage of Game lines and other wager throughout the rest of the NHL postseason.
2013 Stanley Cup Championship Odds– Found at Bovada Sportsbook 5/31/2013