Betting Websites Unimpressed by ‘17 NHL Expansion Draft

It’s alive! It’s alive! But the Vegas Golden Knights’ betting websites’ odds are dead on arrival. In spite of which, when general manager George McPhee took to the stage following the NHL Expansion Draft on Wednesday at T-Mobile Arena and enumerated his greatest hockey experiences, he saw fit to add, “the Stanley Cup is going to be up there.” And as everybody knows, using ‘going’ to refer to future events implies a strong association with the present. The specific time is not important but the intention is that the event depends on something in the current situation that we know about. ‘Going’ is mostly used to refer to plans and intentions or to make predictions based on present evidence.

Or maybe he was just padding out an admittedly short list (one wonders whether he included punching Lorne Molleken). All things considered it appears as if McPhee, like the Reverend T. Lawrence Shannon, lives on the fantastic level but has to operate on the realistic level. And on that latter level he added that “there were two objectives. The first was to put an entertaining and competitive team on the ice. … The second objective was to acquire prospects and surplus draft picks that can help us draft our way to success.” As a matter of fact, the Knights acquired 10 draft picks; three in the first round of the 2017 NHL Draft, and the remaining seven over the next four years.

Vegas Golden Knights - NHL Las Vegas 2017 Draft Picks
Vegas Golden Knights – NHL Las Vegas 2017 Draft Picks

Las Vegas is all about gambling and sportsbooks and, in a single word, money. As such, the Golden Knights did not shy away from big contracts, such as Marc-André Fleury’s $23,000,000 four-year contract, or James Neal’s $30,000,000 six-year deal. According to, the Knights left the expansion draft with a $74.1 million payroll. And speaking of Fleury, the three-time Stanley Cup winner is likely going to be the Knights’ fearless leader. Fun fact: The Pens traded their second-round pick in the 2020 NHL Entry Draft in exchange for Vegas selecting Fleury. As if there was any doubt they were going to do so any way. McPhee and his staff used a color code system to categorize players. “Blue in this case was probably a player that we’re claiming and keeping and don’t have interest in moving.” Let’s just say Fleury could’ve joined the Blue Man Group. “[Pittsburgh] gave us a pick to make sure it happened, and it was going to happen anyway,” McPhee let on.

“This team should be competitive next year,” league commish Gary Bettman said. “Are they going to win the Stanley Cup in the first year? I’m not so sure anybody should be predicting that.” Don’t worry Gar-Gar; betting websites sure ain’t giving the Golden Knights a snowball’s chance in hell. By way of comparison, the Pittsburgh Penguins have +710 odds of winning the 2017-2018 Stanley Cup, while the Knights’ odds are +15000 odds. Mileage may vary depending on who you ask, but most if not all sources will give you about the same odds.

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Nolan Patrick Top Pick at Betting Websites for 2017 NHL Entry Draft

Betting websites think that Nolan Patrick will be the biggest nugget in the 2017 NHL Entry Draft. All signs point to the New Jersey Devils selecting Patrick as the top overall pick this weekend – unless they decide to take a left turn and go instead for Nico Hischier.

Nolan Patrick

The Canadian centre scored 33 goals and had 30 assists with the Winnipeg Thrashers of the Manitoba Midget ‘AAA’ Hockey League before being selected by the Brandon Wheat Kings as the 4th pick overall in the 2013 Western Hockey League Bantam Draft. Patrick posted 205 points (92 goals and 113 assists) in 163 regular season games and 45 points (21 goals and 24 assists) in 49 postseason games in four seasons with Brandon. Patrick was named the 2016 WHL playoffs MVP after helping the Wheat Kings win their first championship in two decades, tying teammate Jayce Hawryluk for a league-best 30 points. He finished tied for third in the league in assists (61) and fifth in points (102) in 72 games in the 2015-16 regular season. Furthermore, Patrick won the WHL Rookie of the Year award in 2014-15 after averaging more than a point per game and leading all rookies in goals.

Nico Hischier

Nico Hischier ready for anything a 2017 NHL Draft
Nico Hischier ready for 2017 NHL Draft

Even if picked second overall as betting websites in the US project him to be, Hischier still stands to become the highest-drafted Swiss skater in the history of the NHL history, surpassing Nino ‘El Nino’ Niederreiter who was picked 5th overall by the Islanders in 2010. He led Quebec Major Junior Hockey League rookies with 38 goals and assists 48 (86 points) in 57 games this season. Hischier was named the CHL and QMJHL Rookie of the Year and given the Mike Bossy Trophy to the league’s best professional prospect.

Other prospects include…

Casey Mittelstadt

The highest-rated US-born in the 2017 Draft Prospect Rankings, Mittelstadt was named the winner of Minnesota’s Mr. Hockey award in 2016-17 to the top senior high school hockey player in the state, joining such other recipients as Nick Bjugstad, Nick Leddy, and Ryan McDonagh. He led Eden Prairie High School in goals, assists, and points in 2016-17, while also appearing with the Green Bay Gamblers of the United States Hockey League, averaging more than a point per game in 24 games.

Gabriel Vilardi

Vilardi averaged more than a point-per-game in the 2016-17 regular season, posting 61 points (29 goals and 32 assists) in 49 games. His 29 scores led the Windsor Spitfires while his 61 points ranked second on the team. additionally, he led Windsor in playoffs points Ontario Hockey League postseason with 2 goals and 4 assists for 6 points in a seven-game, first-round loss to London.

Michael Rasmussen

Plenty of Canadians best betting prediction sites – as well as NHL teams to choose from. Rasmussen led the Tri-City Americans with 15 power-play goals in 2016-17, finishing the season with 32 goals, 23 assists (55 points) in 50 games, becoming the first Americans to score four goals in a single game since 2012 in the process.

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Soccer Betting Sites Contemplate the Best Escape for CR7

Richard Kimble, David Banner, and now Cristiano Ronaldo. Sites for betting are weighing the best escape routes for the Portuguese striker. But first let’s establish some facts. Name: Richard Kimble. Profession: Footballer. Destination: Investigation for tax evasion. However, laws are made by men, carried out by men, and men are imperfect. CR7 may be innocent. What Ronaldo could not prove was that he encountered a man running from the vicinity of his home. A man with one arm. A man who has not yet been found. Ronaldo ponders his fate as he looks at the world for the last time, and sees only darkness. But in that darkness, fate moves its huge hand.

Manchester United. Manchester is where CR7 made the transition from local sensation to international superstar, so it only makes sense that he’d seek sanctuary in Old Trafford. At this juncture in time, though, it seems that MUFC is more interested in another Madrid forward; namely Alvaro Morata. Manchester recently released Zlatan Ibrahimovic and has moved their sights from Antoine Griezmann to Morata.

Ronaldo asked his agent for a transfer to PSG
Ronaldo asked his agent for a transfer to PSG

Paris St. Germain. According to Ronaldo asked his agent for a transfer to PSG. Nonetheless, “we have not had an offer for Cristiano…the Sheikh at Paris Saint-Germain is a friend of mine, and he hasn’t called me nor have we talked,” Real Madrid president Florentino Perez told Spanish radio station Onda Cero. By “Sheikh” he presumably means chairman and chief executive officer of Paris Saint-Germain Nasser Al-Khelaifi?

Bayern Munich. Sites for betting have mentioned the German team as another refuge for CR7. Times surely have changed when people want to escape to Germany, but Bayern chief executive Karl-Heinz Rummenigge dismissed the rumors as nothing more than a crock of Scheise. “We are accustomed to speculating intensively on possible ins and outs during the transfer period. As a rule, we do not comment on these rumours,” Rummenigge said. “But in the case of Cristiano Ronaldo, we want to clarify once and for all that this rumour has no basis and must be referred to the realm of the fable.” Conversely, Fortuna Köln of the German third division has expressed interest in CR7 but claim to be only able to pay him in beer. We want to go to there.

Any Chinese or MLS team. Let’s face it; it may not be tomorrow or for a long time, but Cristiano Ronaldo will eventually end up in the MLS. They all do.

One can’t help but feel that soccer betting sites are overlooking possible destinations like Switzerland or the Netherlands – two countries considered to be tax havens. Of course, that would assume that Ronaldo is guilty of any wrongdoing. And while popular opinion is quick to side with the accusers, Perez is sure “sure that Cristiano complies with his tax duties, it must be a confusion that will be cleared.” He denied that CR7 would want Real Madrid to pay any fines for him, and added that “Cristiano Ronaldo has a contract with Madrid” and “the [release] clause for Cristiano is £1bn.”

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Markelle Fultz the Sportsbooks Pick to be the Overall First Pick

University of Washington point guard Markelle Fultz is the sportsbooks pick to be the overall first pick in the 2017 NBA draft, albeit selected by the Philadelphia 76ers and not the Boston Celtics. Celtics and Sixers have agreed to swap the Nos. 1 and 3 picks, and the transaction should be finalized today. Boston will get at least one extra first-round pick – specifically, the 2018 that Philly acquired from the Suns via the Lakers at the 2015 trade deadline. If that pick doesn’t fall between No. 2 and No. 5 in next year’s draft, the 76ers would give the Celtics a 2019 first-round pick they acquired from the Sacramento Kings.

The bottom line is, the Sixers are expected, even obligated, to select Fultz. While the Nets presumably shed a Single Tear, à la Iron Eyes Cody. Fultz visited the 76ers’ practice facility for a meet-and-greet on Saturday, where he took pics with potential teammates Joel Embiid, Ben Simmons, and Robert Covington – a foursome that according to Embiid would be legend-wait-for-it-dary “if it happened.” If it does happen, Fultz would have the one thing he lacked during his one-year college career; an actual team. He averaged 23.2 points, 5.7 rebounds and 5.9 assists per game in 25 games, and was the lone saving grace in a Huskies team that finished 9-22.

Only Kevin Durant and Michael Beasley have had a better scoring average as freshmen than Fultz. Both KD and Beasley were the 2nd overall pick in 2007 and 2008 respectively. Obviously, though, he hopes to be more like the former and less like the latter. Alas, there are no sportsbooks odds on whether a prospect will be a hit or a bust. As a matter of fact, we still don’t know if Philly’s previous picks have been a hit or a bust. Embiid (No. 3 in 2014) missed his first two seasons and played 31 games in 2016-17; Jahlil Okafor (No. 3 in 2015) has not reached the 60-game mark in either of his two seasons; and Simmons (No. 1 in 2016) missed the entirety of last season. So when Embiid said “if it happened” he was not referring to the Sixers selecting Fultz; he probably meant “if all of us are ever healthy enough to play together at the same time.” Now it makes sense.

In other draft-related news, online sportsbook expect Lonzo Ball to be the 2nd overall pick. The Lakers and Ball have been playing ‘will they or won’t they’ like they were Sam and Diane. I loved Cheers because you always knew it was only a half-hour till Wings and then you could just sleep till Monday.

Oh right, the draft. According to several betting sources the Lakers have not made Ball any promises, notwithstanding the fact that the UCLA point guard has not had any type of contact with any other NBA team. If LA were to pass on Ball and instead go for Josh Jackson or De’Aaron Fox, the 2017 Pac-12 Freshman of the Year could end up in, of all places, Boston. Which probably was Danny Ainge’s Machiavellian plan all along.

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Can Aaron Judge Win the Triple Crown of Baseball?

Aaron Judge is having the kind of season that has led betting websites to wonder whether he can win the vaunted Triple Crown. Before we go any further, this does not involve Bill Brasky throwing a saddle on his back and riding him around Wyoming for three days until his stamina increases with each day and he develops tremendous leg muscles and Brasky decides to enter him in the Kentucky Derby under the name Turkish Delight. We are talking about the Major League Baseball Triple Crown here which, to be honest is as hard if not harder to win than the horsy version.

A baseball player is triply-crowned when he leads a league – either the American League or the National League – or the League – the all of Major League Baseball, if he’s truly a super-duper-overachiever – in in batting average, home runs, and runs batted in (RBI) in a single season. the only player to have achieved such trifecta since 1967 was Detroit Tigers first baseman Miguel Cabrera in 2012, when he lead the AL with 44 homers, 139 RBIs, and .330 batting average. By the way, 10 of 17 Triple Crown winners played in the AL when they accomplished that feat (11 if one counts the American Association) including the last six straight, which something betting websites should take note of, seeing as how Judge plays with the Yankees who in turn play in the American League.

In addition to Cabrera, Judge could join such Hall of Famers as Ty Cobb, Rogers Hornsby, Lou Gehrig, Ted Williams, and Mickey Mantle. Cobb won the Triple Crown in 1909 with the fewest home runs ever (9) all of which were inside the park. Additionally, he led the MLB with .377 batting average and 107 RBIs as a member of the Tigers. Hornsby led the National League with a then-record 42 home runs, .401 average, and 152 RBIs in 1922, and became the first player to repeat the accolade when he led the Majors with .403 batting average, 39 home runs, and 143 RBIs in 1925. He was a St. Louis Cardinals both times.

Gehrig became the first Yankee to win the Triple Crown when he led the MLB with 49 homers, 165 runs batted in, and .363 batting average in 1934. BoSox left fielder Williams became the second two-time Triple Crown winner; he led the Majors with 36 HRs, 137 RBIs, and .356 batting average in 1942 and the AL with 32 home runs, 114 RBIs, and .343 average in 1945. Mantle became the second Yankee with this achievement when he recorded 53 homers, 130 RBIs, and .353 average to lead the majors in all three categories.

Judge was briefly on top of all three as well but has been lagging in batting average and RBI departments, though he still leads in home runs with 22. Betting websites project him to finish the season with finish with 129 RBIs and break Mark McGwire’s rookie home run record. Of course, nothing is written in stone and many things can happen in a season as long as the MLB’s.

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