A season ago, the Vegas Golden Knights didn’t just rip through the Western Conference in style — they won the Stanley Cup without ever playing a game seven.
This year, there’s a target on their back, but they’re not viewed as the clear favorite to repeat the feat.
Let’s dig into the latest NHL Western Conference betting odds and pick out some top contenders.
NHL Western Conference Winner Odds 2024
NHL odds used for these best bets are from Tuesday, Feb. 13, and courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook.
- Edmonton Oilers (+330)
- Colorado Avalanche (+400)
- Vancouver Canucks (+600)
- Dallas Stars (+650)
- Vegas Golden Knights (+650)
- Winnipeg Jets (+700)
- Los Angeles Kings (+1100)
- Nashville Predators (+4500)
- Louis Blues (+5000)
- Seattle Kraken (+6000)
- Minnesota Wild (+6000)
- Calgary Flames (+6000)
- Arizona Coyotes (+13000)
- San Jose Sharks (+50000)
- Chicago Blackhawks (+50000)
- Anaheim Ducks (+50000)
As is so often the case, we can see some definite tiers in these odds, with big drop-offs after the Kings and then another after the Flames.
Sportsbooks think they know who’s a real threat, but let’s see if we can find some value on a team they missed.
NHL Western Conference Winner Best Bet
Vancouver Canucks (+600)
The Canucks are the conference’s best team in terms of points by a decent margin, and the gap in scoring differential is even more stark. Vancouver’s plus-56 figure crushes Winnipeg’s plus-34, the next-best total in the West.
Still, the Canucks sit with +600 odds, the third-best in the conference.
- See where the Canucks sit in our 2024 Stanley Cup odds.
The challenging Pacific Division could be an issue, with the defending champion Golden Knights and the juggernaut Oilers in the Canucks’ way, but those two teams are currently seeded to face off in the first round.
In this scenario, a dream for Vancouver, one of these two contenders would get eliminated, and the other could come out of the series completely drained.
If the seeding works out optimally, the Canucks could have just about the best path of anyone, and a roster that can take advantage of it.
NHL Western Conference Favorites
Edmonton Oilers (+330)
If the Canucks are being punished for their recent history and division placement, it’s pretty outrageous that the Oilers are the favorites.
They also are in the Pacific, so they have to deal with the Knights and the Canucks, and few teams have had a worse recent habit of spending each postseason squandering massive talent.
The Connor McDavid-Leon Draisaitl one-two punch is outrageous, Zach Hyman is scoring at a high pace, and the power play is as efficient as ever, but what else is new?
Edmonton’s back end looks better this season by every metric, but it has done a lot of beating up on low-end teams.
We’ll see if the Oilers hold up against the best of the best this postseason, something they’ve failed to do in the past.
Colorado Avalanche (+400)
The 2022 Stanley Cup champions have the benefit of perhaps the cleanest path of any of the league’s top contenders.
There are some good teams in the Central Division this year, but it’s not as loaded as any of the other three divisions, especially at the top.
The Avs, however, are loaded. Nathan MacKinnon is in a two-man race to win the Art Ross trophy and is favored to win the Hart Trophy as well. (Check out the latest NHL MVP odds.)
Of course, the Avs have more than just their leading man. Mikko Rantanen is another top forward, while Cale Makar is consistently one of the top defenders in the league.
NHL Western Conference Contenders
Dallas Stars (+650)
As one of the highest-scoring teams in the league, but also one that allows over three goals per game, there’s no denying that the Stars play some exciting hockey. Interestingly enough, they do have a star goaltender in Jake Oettinger, but he hasn’t been at his best this season.
If the Stars want to have a realistic shot to get through the West, they’re going to have to hold onto their very tenuous lead in the Central.
- Wager on hockey daily with our NHL parlay picks.
Dropping down to second could be a real issue as the No. 2 team in the division will likely face a solid Jets team, rather than an extremely low-end wild card squad.
The Stars and Avalanche are probably destined for a second-round meeting regardless of seeding, but coming into that clash with a rest advantage could be a tremendous boost.
Vegas Golden Knights (+650)
Who better to back than the defending champs?
The Knights are sandwiched between the Canucks and Oilers in a brutal Pacific Division, but they undoubtedly have the best postseason pedigree of any team in that pod.
As far as skaters, it’s been a pretty balanced team effort once more, as the star has really been goalkeeper Adin Hill, who has played some outrageous hockey when healthy this year.
Securing back-to-back titles is tough, but not as rare as you’d imagine in the NHL. Let’s see if Vegas can follow its first title with another one.
Winnipeg Jets (+700)
The Jets may not be a top seed right now, but they’re in that manageable Central Division and could make some serious noise if they heat up at the right time.
This team is all about defense: nobody gives up fewer goals per game. And while Winnipeg may not always play beautiful hockey, the Jets do not care as long as they’re winning games.
- Check out our NHL Eastern Conference betting odds.
Goaltender Connor Hellebuyck is having another outstanding season and appears to be in line for a Vezina Trophy, which would be the second for the American netminder.
Of course, he’s not doing it all on his own. A group of defensemen, anchored by the excellent Josh Morrissey, has done an absolutely fantastic job helping Hellebuyck keep the scoresheet clean, as he faces an average of just 27 shots on goal per game.
NHL Western Conference Sleeper
Los Angeles Kings (+1100)
The Kings are probably the only team outside the main group of West contenders that has any realistic chance of getting through the conference.
They’re playing the kind of defense-first hockey that can elevate teams to surprising results, as the offense is much more egalitarian than star-driven.
We saw Los Angeles capture lightning in a bottle time and time again in the early stages of the last decade. Could we see the Kings do it one more time exactly 10 years later?
Past NHL Western Conference Winners
2023: Vegas Golden Knights
2022: Colorado Avalanche
2021: Conference-based playoffs not held due to COVID-19 Pandemic.
2020: Dallas Stars
2019: St. Louis Blues
2018: Vegas Golden Knights
2017: Nashville Predators
2016: San Jose Sharks
2015: Chicago Blackhawks
2014: Los Angeles Kings