Recently, Coolbet Canada released their earlier betting odds on who will win the 2022 NLL Cup. Let’s take a deeper look at the NLL Cup odds.
Let’s start right at the top with Saskatchewan and Halifax as the favourites with +550.
No arguments with Halifax, they are a veteran-ladled team and the rich just got richer with the late acquisitions of Aaron Bold and Rhys Duch. Without a doubt, they are a safe bet.
I’m not as convinced with Saskatchewan. Are they a contender for the cup? Without a doubt. But I’d almost be willing to take them at +600 rather than at the top with +550. Hear me out.
Saskatchewan is running with a much younger team this season and lost some key contributors in the off-season. They have the talent to win a lot of games, but there is also going to be some growing pains.
Next, you have the Toronto Rock at +650. This team was looking strong before the 2019-2020 season came to a halt. They will be challenging for the top of the standings and definitely a top-three favourite. That being said, I think there are teams further down that will give you better odds for a better payout.
At +700 you have the San Diego Seals and the Philadelphia Wings at +800. I’m a little surprised that San Diego slide down to number four as they have contended for first place in the West ever since joining the league.
I’m lumping the Wings in with the Seals as well because I feel you are also getting good odds that them. If they have continue to get good goaltending from Zach Higgins and Ben McIntosh is the Ben McIntosh we all know, the chances for the Wings contending for the title are pretty good and at +800 you are getting good odds.
But if I’m putting down any money, I’m looking at the next two teams: Buffalo at +900 and Georgia at +1500.
Buffalo gave Calgary a run for their money when the last NLL Cup was played, so I’m dumbfounded that a team with very little turnover has fallen so low in the odds. Yes, Halifax is without a doubt the favour, but you are getting astronomical odds with Buffalo.
Then there is Georgia. You still have Lyle Thompson, one of the best goal-scorers in the league and Mike Poulin has been playing some of his best lacrosse in goal for the Swarm. They are another team that could give you a good payout.
Down in the bottom half of the teams you have Colorado (+2100), Albany (+2200) and Vancouver (+2500). Colorado, Albany and Vancouver are two teams that have struggled as of late. I feel it’s fair to give a slight edge to Colorado simply because Dillon Ward can steal games for you, yet I don’t see those three being contenders.
Next, believe it or not, is the defending champion Calgary Roughnecks at +3500. I’m going to use the phrase that everyone hates “rebuild season.” Losing Duch is a huge loss for the Roughnecks. Yes, they still have Curtis Dickson and Christian Del Bianco, but they aren’t nearly the same team we saw 20 months ago.
Rounding out the bottom is Rochester (+7500), New York (+10000) and Panther City (+17500). Rochester and New York simply were not good 20 months ago and nothing has really changed since then roster-wise.
Panther City is the wild card. If you have money to blow and what to take a flyer, throw it down on Panther City. That’s the thing about expansion teams, you really don’t know what you are going to get. Traditionally, expansion teams aren’t very competitive right off the bat, but it isn’t unheard of for an expansion team to use that underdog status to their advantage (I’m looking at you Vegas Golden Knights).
So, who is getting the best odds?
Yes, the top two or three teams are likely the safest bets, but with small payouts. But if I’m betting money, I’m looking at Buffalo, Georgia and, to a lesser extend Philadelphia. They have the talent to contend for the cup and you’ll get a better payout compared to teams like Halifax and Saskatchewan.
Shawn Slaght has been a sports reporter across the Canadian prairies for over 10 years and has experience covering everything from junior hockey to World Cup skiing to all levels of lacrosse. He is the Saskatchewan correspondent for All Lacrosse All The Time.