NHL betting watch: Smartest picks for award winners

It's time for you to place your bets on the 2021-22 NHL Awards ballots.

I don't personally bet on the NHL Awards as a Professional Hockey Writers Association member. I am a member of our monthly platform. NHL Awards WatchThis article examines the opinions of voters about each award, and includes my analysis. I've seen how analysis can influence opinions of other voters before so betting about the awards feels too “insider trading”.

For you? You can make money by voting for the awards, if your eyes are able to see the direction of the wind.

Let's just get this out of the way: Don’t waste money on the Vezina Trophy Voting. Igor ShesterkinThe New York RangersThe award will be won by him at -1000 He holds over 70% of the handle. He will win in a walk.

Let's now move on to the more controversial awards


Hart Trophy

Favorite: Auston Matthews, Toronto Maple Leafs (-350)

Runner-Up: Connor McDavid, Edmonton Oilers (+400)

Longshot: Igor Shesterkin, New York Rangers (+2200)

Matthews has it all sorted.

There is a reason why he holds over 51% handle in MVP betting. His single-season Toronto Maple Leafs record of 58 goals is significant news. Anytime someone sets an original Six standard, it's big news. His remarkable 2.00 goals per 60 min of 5-on-5 play is impressive, and his points per game average (1.46) is comparable to McDavid's (1.47). Matthews was second in Hart's last season's award and has never been awarded the trophy. Voters love to crown a new king.

Recall bias is another reason why voters tend to favor Shesterkin over Matthews and McDavid. Florida PanthersForward Jonathan Huberdeau(+1600). Calgary FlamesForward Johnny Gaudreau(+1600) in the odds. Three quarters of the season he was the Rangers' goalie, but his numbers have declined a bit over the last quarter while New York has really settled into its role as a team. His save percentage is.935, which is an exceptional but not all-timer standard. Shesterkin will be an “all-timer” because he has only played in 65% of the games he plays for his team, which is far less than the Hart winners over the past 25 year.

McDavid is a more prominent name than Matthews (26.1%) but it is worth noting that we think much of the wagering took place before Matthews' goal-scoring spree.

Norris Trophy

Favorite: Cale Makar, Colorado Avalanche (-160)

Runner-Up: Roman Josi, Nashville Predators (+135)

Longshot: Victor Hedman, Tampa Bay Lightning (+5000)

Makar was preseason favourite to win the award best defenseman (+400). He remains there as the season winds down. He has rewarded his confidence with 82 points from 71 games and a plus-48. He has not done anything to stop what seemed to be predetermination by the voters prior to the season to give the Colorado defenseman the Norris. Makar is the owner of 70.1%.

There is real value in taking a chance at Josi with these odds. While he might not have the all around season Makar had, that may be offset by his defenseman's outstanding offensive season. Six more games are left for the Predators. Josi will break the 20-year mark for single-season points totals by a defenseman if he picks up six more points, to finish with 94. This would be his best offensive output since 1990-91.

Makar's candidacy could be overshadowed by Josi's historic offensive season and the hype he's received as a possible MVP candidate. Makar is seeking his second Norris, but he did win it in 2020.

Calder Trophy

Favorite: Moritz Seider, Detroit Red Wings (-250)

Runner-Up: Trevor Zegras, Anaheim Ducks (+500)

Longshot: Michael BuntingToronto Maple Leafs (+750).

One of the most intriguing awards on the docket. Seider has been on the inside rail for the past few months. This is reflected in his ticket percentage (44.6%) as well as the handle (65.3%). Red Wings defenseman Seider is the leader among rookie blueliners in both points (47) and ice-time per game (23.05). He's played in every situation for Detroit and has been steady. He's a solid selection, but not one to be admired like Zegras. Zegras is a winger who scored 57 points in 70 contests and has been featured on more highlight reels this season than any other NHL player.

For the record, Seider's colleague, forward Lucas RaymondZegras is actually better than he is at +450, but he hasn't had the best finish to his season.

Raymond and Zegras are both behind Bunting in rookie scoring. Bunting has 63 points from 76 games. Raymond, however, is better analytically than McDavid with 25.9 goals above expectation. He currently has 2.7% of his handle.

This award has a lot of value. This award is usually won by rookies who lead their peers in points and goals. Bunting is not the preferred choice because he is 26 years old and there is an inherent bias against older rookies. However, I expect the debate to continue during voting and Bunting could win the debate – and rookie award.

Our Favorite Weekend

Chalk's David Purdum pointed out this weekend that NHL favourites are not in the cards. went 14-0 on Saturday. ESPN Stats and Info reported that this was the first time that all the favored teams had won on a 14 game slate since they began tracking such things in 2017-18.

The dominance by the favored teams is more than that. Favorites were 2-0 on Friday. They were 6-0 on Sunday as the Buffalo Sabres' moneyline moved into favorit territory very late before their win against the Flyers.

In just three days, the NHL's favorites were 22-0.

It will be interesting to see where this moneyline trend goes over the next few weeks as playoff teams push for higher seedings or, in Western Conference, to secure postseason berths. Meanwhile, the “have-nots” are suffering through a mentally and physically exhausting season.

Trend or trick?

NHL betting watch: Smartest picks for award winners

Leon DraisaitlShot props

The Edmonton Oilers' 4-0 victory over Vegas on Saturday night was not about the final score. Their star center's shot total was zero. This is only the fourth time this season, and the second time since 2022, that Draisaitl had failed to create a shot. He's now gone under in three out of five games after clearing 3.5 shots in six consecutive games. It's a simple feat. TRICKDraisaitl, however, is a top NHL volume-shooter and is trying unsuccessfully to beat Auston Matthews for the League's goal-scoring crown.

NHL betting watch: Smartest picks for award winners

Buffalo SabresSecond period ended

Chris Otto noted that the Sabres had a lot of action during their second periods. In eight consecutive second periods, the Sabres have scored more than 1.5 goals and in 14 of their 15 overall games. Buffalo averages 1.12 goals per second period while giving up 1.27 goals per games in the middle frame. This is a TRENDAs the season draws to a close, it is worth following.

NHL betting watch: Smartest picks for award winners

Columbus Blue JacketsBelow the total

Anaheim beat Columbus 6-4 on Sunday. It was an odd total. This was only the second time in seven that the total was over in a Blue Jackets contest. It is quite remarkable when you consider that Columbus had been 43-21-5 before this stretch. They still have the highest percentage (62.5%) of games that went over this year, so we'll just call it a blip. TRICKThe jackets are action-heavy.

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