The puck drops on the Stanley Cup Final on Monday night as the San Jose Sharks and the Pittsburgh Penguins battle for the right to hoist the Cup.
Heading into the series opener the oddsmakers at online sportsbook Bodog are backing the Penguins to win their fourth championship in franchise history. Pittsburgh is the series favorite at -125 and the Sharks are a +105 underdog.
At home for Game 1 the Penguins are also favored, at -150 at Bodog. The Sharks are a +130 road underdog. During the regular season the Penguins and Sharks faced off twice and split the season series at a win apiece. The road team won both games. The last six matchups between them is also even at 3-3. Looking back a little further San Jose is 6-4 in their last 10 against Pittsburgh and 11-4 in their last 15.
Throughout their playoff runs both teams have been strong at home with San Jose posting a 7-2 record and Pittsburgh a 7-3 mark. On home ice against Pittsburgh the Sharks have been especially dominant at 10-1 in their last 11. The Sharks also own a respectable 6-4 record in their last 10 games in Pittsburgh.
One other futures bet the oddsmakers at Bodog are currently offering on this series is Conn Smythe odds. The Conn Smythe favorite is the Sharks’ Joe Pavelski at +400. Pavelski is currently second in playoff scoring with 22 points and he has a playoff-leading 13 goals.
After Pavelski there are four players listed at +500 on the Conn Smythe odds, including Phil Kessel, Matt Murray and Sidney Crosby from Pittsburgh and Logan Couture from San Jose. Couture leads playoff scoring with 24 points and Kessel is Pittsburgh’s leading scorer with 18 points including nine goals.
Other players getting consideration by oddsmakers include Martin Jones (+600), Brent Burns (+700), Joe Thornton (+900) and Kris Letang (+1400). The only player in the series to previously win the Conn Smythe is Evgeni Malkin and he’s a +900 underdog to get his named added to the trophy again.