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Morning Coffee: A look at the updated odds for NHL Draft

Adam Fantilli Canada Adam Fantilli - Images on Ice

The Chicago Blackhawks are on the clock with the first overall pick in the 2023 NHL Draft.

Once they officially select Connor Bedard No. 1, the real fun will begin.

According to the current odds at FanDuel, Bedard will be followed by Adam Fantilli, Leo Carlsson, and Will Smith in that exact order as the first four picks tonight.

Then again, all it will take is one team to go in a different direction to drastically change the outlook at the top of the board.

With a thin list of unrestricted free agents available this summer, it appears as though the trade talks around the league have picked up considerably in recent days.

Is there a team willing to trade assets to move into the top five tonight?

Or will the teams currently slated to pick in those spots stay put and look to add an elite prospect to their roster via the draft?

This is the Morning Coffee for Wednesday, June 28, 2023.

A look at the updated odds for NHL Draft

The closer we get to the start of the 2023 NHL Draft, the greater the anticipation.

The Blackhawks have spent the past couple of days adding veteran pieces to their roster via trades. Tonight, they’ll officially add the new face of their franchise in Bedard with the first-overall pick.

Bedard is just the sixth player ever to score at least 71 goals and record at least 143 points in their draft-eligible season.

Chicago currently has nine of the top-100 picks, so it won’t be a surprise at all if they moved a pick or two to add another veteran to their roster.

The Anaheim Ducks are slated to pick second and Fantilli has emerged as the heavy favourite to go No. 2 in recent weeks at -700 odds at FanDuel.

The Columbus Blue Jackets have the third-overall pick.

Carlsson is currently -300 to go in the No. 3 spot.

The market for the fourth-overall pick, which currently belongs to the San Jose Sharks, is where things start to get really interesting.

Smith is the favourite to go No. 4 at -185, followed by Carlsson at +270 and Matvei Michkov at +400 odds.

While it’s still considered more likely than not that we see some combination of Carlsson and Smith at No. 3 and No. 4, this is the market where Michkov appears at shorter than 5-to-1 odds for the first time.

Michkov is also the third choice to go fifth overall at +240.

Ryan Leonard has emerged as the favourite to go No. 5 at +165 odds, followed closely by David Reinbacher at +210.

The Montreal Canadiens own the fifth pick, and if they stay put and make the selection, it will be very interesting to see which one of Leonard, Reinbacher or Michkov they select if all three players are still available.

The NHL Draft is always a fun time of the year and with Free Agent Frenzy just three days away, the anticipation is building as fans hope the general manager of their favourite team can dramatically upgrade his roster this week.

A FanDuel Best Bet for Wednesday night

If you bet on sports often enough, you’re going to get hit with a bad beat once in a while.

If you tailed the FanDuel Best Bet I gave out in Tuesday’s column, it wasn’t one of them.

That wasn’t a bad beat, it was a bad bet.

We’re still hitting above 70 per cent with the FanDuel Best Bets in this column over the past six weeks, but nothing seems to have come easy for me of late.

This morning, I’m looking to turn the page and get back on track with a winner.

My FanDuel Best Bet is the Texas Rangers -1.5 -113 against the Detroit Tigers tonight.

Tigers’ starter Joey Wentz has struggled mightily away from home this season with a 1-5 record and a 7.48 ERA.

He’s 0-3 with a 5.40 ERA in the month of June. Detroit has won just one of his six road starts this season.

On the flip side, the Rangers will turn to Dane Dunning, who is 4-0 with a 3.09 ERA at home this season.

Texas is 25-14 at home this season and their bats finally seemed to wake up in the second half of last night’s 8-3 win.

I think the Rangers will continue to roll tonight versus Wentz, so I’ll take Texas -1.5 -110 as my FanDuel Best Bet.