Pittsburgh Penguins favorites to win third straight Stanley Cup in 2018

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The Pittsburgh Penguins finished off the Nashville Predators on Sunday to become the first repeat Stanley Cup champions in 19 seasons.

The Penguins are the favorites in Las Vegas to make it three in a row next year.

Pittsburgh heads into the offseason with 8-1 odds to win next year’s Stanley Cup championship, according to the Westgate SuperBook in Las Vegas. The Tampa Bay Lightning, Washington Capitals and Edmonton Oilers are expected to be top-tier contenders and are each listed at 10-1, followed by the Chicago Blackhawks at 12-1. Despite their 2016 title, the Penguins did not begin this season as Stanley Cup favorites. Odds tabbed the Blackhawks as the preseason favorites. But Pittsburgh mounted another playoff run, surviving a seven-game series with the Capitals and outlasting the upstart Predators in the Stanley Cup Final.

Nashville began its surprising run to the Stanley Cup Final as 30-1 longshots, but stunned the top-seeded Chicago Blackhawks in a four-game sweep and tested the Penguins before eventually falling in six games.

The Predators are 14-1 to win next year’s title, along with the Montreal Canadiens, Toronto Maple Leafs, New York Rangers, Minnesota Wild, Anaheim Ducks and Dallas Stars. The Columbus Blue Jackets, San Jose Sharks and Los Angeles Kings are next at 20-1, heading into what could be an intriguing offseason, especially in Washington, D.C.

The Capitals are expected to undergo changes that could impact the Stanley Cup odds, especially if rumblings about possibly trading superstar Alex Ovechkin come to fruition. Also, T.J. Oshie, Kevin Shattenkirk, Justin Williams, and Karl Alzner are all free agents in Washington.

The expansion Vegas Golden Knights, at 200-1, are the biggest longshots to win next year’s Stanley Cup. There already have been 38 bets on the Knights to win the Stanley Cup at the Westgate, the largest a $200 wager.

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