The Inside Edge: Diving deep into futures
We are just a day away from dropping the puck on the 2020-21 NHL season, and there has never been a better time to take a look at the betting odds.
We have no time to waste, so let’s dive into some Hart Memorial Trophy odds.
Connor McDavid +550
Connor McDavid, who turns 24 on Wednesday, has the shortest odds to win the Hart Trophy this season.
The superstar centre has already won the award once before, in his second NHL season, when he scored 30 goals and added 70 assists to lead the league in points.
Since then, McDavid has recorded 321 points over just 224 games and fell just three points shy of his fourth-consecutive 100-point season last year when he had 97 in 64 games.
The Oilers captain has finished in the top-five of Hart voting in four of his five NHL seasons.
Nathan MacKinnon +600
Right behind McDavid is Nova Scotia’s own Nathan MacKinnon.
MacKinnon landed in the NHL as an 18-year-old in 2013, and didn’t disappoint from Day 1.
His 24 goals and 63 points in his first season saw him take home rookie of the year.
But the Colorado Avalanche centre struggled to produce at an elite level the next three seasons, averaging just 47.66 points per season from 2014-16.
Since then, MacKinnon has seen his game go to another level.
MacKinnon has posted at least 93 points in three straight seasons and is scoring at a 1.28 point-per-game pace the last three seasons.
His efforts have seen him finish second in Hart voting in 2018 and 2020, and sixth in 2019.
Artemi Panarin +1000
The Breadman didn’t skip a beat in his first season with the New York Rangers.
After a career-best 87 points with the Columbus Blue Jackets in 2018-19, Panarin one-upped himself in his first season in the Big Apple.
The 29-year-old left winger recorded 32 goals and 95 points in 69 games last season.
His efforts landed him on the 2019-20 NHL First All-Star Team, and third in Hart voting.
Since coming to the NHL in 2015, Panarin has 148 goals and 415 points in 391 games.
Leon Draisaitl +1200
Last season was a breakout year for Leon Draisaitl.
The German posted a career-high 67 assists and 110 points in 2019-20, despite playing 71 games during the COVID-19-shorterned season.
Draisaitl’s season saw him clean up on awards night, as he won the Hart, Ted Lindsay and Art Ross trophies.
His 110 points were 13 more than any other player in the league.
And his 127-point pace would’ve placed him tied for the 54th-most points in a single season and just one point behind Nikita Kucherov’s 128 from the 2018-19 season.
If the 25-year-old Oilers centre can replicate his 2019-20 season, he is terrific value at +1200.
Auston Matthews +1400
Right behind Draisaitl is Auston Matthews.
The Toronto Maple Leafs centre is coming off a career-year which saw him score 47 goals and record 80 points in 70 games.
His 47 goals fell just one short of tying for the league lead, behind David Pastrnak and Alex Ovechkin.
Matthews, 23, would be just the first Leafs player since Ted Kennedy to win the award since 1954.
Alex Ovechkin +2000
It’s been seven seasons since Ovechkin last took home a Hart Trophy, but the Russian is showing no signs of slowing down his prolific goal-scoring.
The 35-year-old has averaged 46.2 goals per season since he turned 30, and his 148 goals since the 2017-18 season are more than any player.
Elias Pettersson +2000
Elias Pettersson has been everything as advertised through his first two NHL seasons.
After winning Rookie of the Year in 2019, the Swedish centre followed that up with 27 goals and 66 points last season.
His sophomore season saw him collect three fifth-place votes for the Hart.
He’ll need a Nathan MacKinnon-like jump in production if he wants to land in the top 3 of Hart voting, but Pettersson has shown the ability to be a star in this league at the young age of 22.
Evgeni Malkin +2500
The 34-year-old Russian is coming off a productive season which saw him score 25 goals and record 74 points in just 55 games.
Malkin won the Hart Trophy in 2012 when he led the league with 109 points, and finished 10th in voting for the award last season.