Penguins early favorites to repeat again as Stanley Cup winners

NHL: Stanley Cup Final-Pittsburgh Penguins at Nashville Predators

(The Sports Xchange) – The Pittsburgh Penguins barely had started their celebration for winning their second consecutive Stanley Cup championship before Las Vegas tabbed them as favorites to capture their franchise’s sixth title in 2017-18.

The Penguins became the NHL’s first repeat champions in 19 years on Sunday when they posted a 2-0 victory over the Nashville Predators in Game Six of the Stanley Cup Final.

A day later, Pittsburgh received 8-1 odds to win next year’s Stanley Cup, according to Westgate SuperBook in Las Vegas. The Penguins feature two-time reigning Conn Smythe Trophy winner Sidney Crosby as well as superstar forward Evgeni Malkin, who led the recently completed postseason in points.

The Tampa Bay Lightning, Washington Capitals and Edmonton Oilers are listed at 10-1, followed by the Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews-led Chicago Blackhawks at 12-1.

Nashville, which received 14-1 odds, ousted Chicago in the first round before advancing to the Western Conference final and Stanley Cup for the first time in franchise history. The Predators are joined by the Montreal Canadiens, Toronto Maple Leafs, New York Rangers, Minnesota Wild, Anaheim Ducks and Dallas Stars at 14-1.

The Vegas Golden Knights expansion club received 200-1 odds.

(Editing by Gene Cherry)