Did Oddsmakers Screw Up the Golden Knights' Preseason Chances of Winning the Stanley Cup?
Maybe they'll make a movie about this. We'll at least tell our future grandchildren about it.
The Vegas Golden Knights are Stanley Cup Finals bound. Yes, those Vegas Golden Knights -- the ones who didn't even exist a year ago.
As awesome as this story is, sportsbooks aren't as pleased after offering upwards of 500:1 odds on the Golden Knights winning the Stanley Cup. That's an implied probability of just 0.2%.
Today, there's debate as to whether or not these sportsbooks screwed up by offering up such favorable odds.
According to our numbers, not necessarily.
I mean, sure, maybe these sportsbooks could've gotten away with higher odds -- some did have 200:1 and 150:1 odds for the Knights entering the season -- which would've helped their bottom line today. This is also a results-oriented way of thinking.
Prior to the season, our algorithm didn't like the Golden Knights. Shocker. Technically, we had them at lower than 1665:1 odds to win the Stanley Cup. They were listed as having a 0% chance, and while it wasn't completely zero, New Jersey was ahead of them at 0.06%. So we know they were longer shots than 1665:1, as those were the Devils' implied odds.
Obviously, we're not a sportsbook, so that's not where the line would or should have been set. But it does give us a quick glance as to how much of a Cinderella story we're witnessing right now, and that even 500:1 odds may not have been that crazy to give out to start the season.
For what it's worth, our algorithm was pretty reactive to how the Knights performed right off the bat. After their 3-0 start, for instance, numberFire's odds boosted Vegas' chances of winning the Stanley Cup to 2.48%. The main reason the algorithm was hesitant to start the year, according to Chief Analyst Keith Goldner, was because of the Knights being an out of sample projection. Having an expansion team is rare, and the sample of expansion teams doesn't exactly show a lot of positivity.
This year's Golden Knights, as we know, are no normal expansion team. Thanks to brilliant depth play and elite goaltending, Vegas is currently sitting with a 52.8% chance to win it all, per our numbers.
Good luck, sportsbooks.