powered bybetstamp

2022-23 NHL season predictions: Cup picks, playoff teams, award winners, and more

Stanley Cup

Will the Colorado Avalanche repeat as Stanley Cup champions?

Will the Tampa Bay Lightning make a fourth consecutive final?

Can the Toronto Maple Leafs finally win a playoff round?

All these answers and more as The Hammer Betting Network’s NHL experts give their predictions for the upcoming season, so you have receipts to show them just how wrong they were come June.

Team predictions

Only Rob Pizzola has the Avalanche repeating as Cup champions, beating his beloved Maple Leafs, while Zack Phillips believes the Leafs will not only get over the first-round hump, but actually win it all. These two devoted Leafs fans bleed blue, so take those claims with a grain of salt. Alex Moretto and So Money – the two non-Leafs fans of the group – do not have the Leafs making the Cup final, with Alex adding: “The Leafs will cruise to a division title but again lose in the first round.” The Leafs were also consensus winners in the Atlantic, along with the Avalanche in the Central, while the Hurricanes and Flames each received three of four votes in the Metro and Pacific.

The Hurricanes, Penguins, Leafs, Lightning, and Panthers are all consensus playoff picks in the East, while the Avalanche, Wild, Flames, Oilers, and Kings are consensus picks in the West. In the East, three of four believe the Islanders will return to form on the back of Ilya Sorokin and reach the playoffs, while Rob and So Money believe the Devils will finally live up to the hype that’s been surrounding them for a couple years now and return to the postseason. Rob and Zack both believe the Capitals’ eight-year playoff run will come to an end, while Alex and So Money have last season’s Eastern Conference Finalists the Rangers missing out. In the West, a highly competitive field left for some tough choices. Alex was the only one to leave the Blues out of the playoffs, Rob was alone in not buying a Golden Knights bounce-back, So Money was the lone expert to omit the Predators from the playoffs, while Zack was the only one to leave out the Stars. 

Award predictions

Well there it is, Connor McDavid is your unanimous 2022-23 Hart Trophy winner! McDavid won the award twice previously, most recently in 2021, with Auston Matthews claiming the honor last year. No one has the Leafs forward winning again this season, though three of four believe he will repeat as the league’s top goal scorer. Cale Makar was also one vote away from being a unanimous pick to repeat as Norris winner. Will voter fatigue play a role there for the young defenseman, who also won the Conn Smythe last season?

Jacob Markstrom was picked twice to win the Vezina for the first time in his career, while staying in Alberta, Oilers forward Dylan Holloway – currently skating on a line with Leon Draisaitl and Zach Hyman – received the most votes to win the Calder. Alex picked the Golden Knights over 96.5 (+100) as one of his five favorite point totals of the season, so it’s no surprise to see him with Logan Thompson as his Calder winner.