In early December, when the Golden Knights were 17-9-1 and their playoff prospects were still uncertain, William Hill sports book director Nick Bogdanovich uttered a classic quote.
“We get killed if they make the playoffs, and we close if they win the Stanley Cup,” he said.
After the Knights went 12-1-1 over the past month to run their record to 29-10-2 — second-best in the NHL behind the Tampa Bay Lightning (30-9-3) — they’re a veritable lock to make the playoffs.
William Hill won’t close if the Knights shock the world and win the Stanley Cup, but it would lose more than $1 million.
“Obviously, I was being sarcastic,” Bogdanovich said. “But they’re beating our brains out on these guys every night.
“People are enamored with them. It’s a great story. An expensive story, but a great story.”
William Hill avoids big loss on puck line
The Knights improved their NHL-leading home mark to 18-2-1 with Sunday night’s 2-1 win over the New York Rangers. William Hill avoided a six-figure loss when the Golden Knights failed to add an empty-net goal in the final minutes.
The Knights were minus-220 favorites on the money line, but many bettors took them on the puck line, meaning they had to win by two goals (minus-1½, plus-130).
“We still lost on the money line, but nothing like it would’ve been on the puck line,” Bogdanovich said. “If they cover the goal and a half, we lose six figures on the game. It was the last game on the board and every parlay was rolling into it.”
Knights boost hockey handle
When the Knights are playing, Bogdanovich said there’s “10 to 15 times” as much action on their game than on any other NHL game on the board, and 90 percent of the wagers are on them.
“I couldn’t have dreamed in a million years we’d get this much money on the NHL,” he said.
Will the Golden Knights win the Stanley Cup? You can bet yes or no on the prop at William Hill, the Westgate and Station Casinos sports books.
Yes is the 7-1 underdog and no the minus-1,100 favorite. No is minus-900 at Station Casinos.
If you had bet $100 on the Knights in every one of their games this season ($100 as underdogs, to win $100 as favorites), you’d be up $2,035. If you only bet on the Knights at home, you’d be ahead $1,495.
UCF underdog to Alabama, Georgia
Central Florida finished 13-0 after upsetting Auburn in the Peach Bowl as a 10½-point underdog. According to Westgate sports book manager Ed Salmons, UCF would’ve been a 17-point underdog to Alabama in the College Football Playoff national championship and a 13-point underdog to Georgia.
NBA ATS, over-under leaders
Entering Monday, the Brooklyn Nets were an NBA-leading 25-13-1 ATS and the Boston Celtics were 26-15-2. The Cleveland Cavaliers had the worst spread mark at 11-27-1 and the Orlando Magic were 14-25-1.
The Milwaukee Bucks were the best over team at 25-13, while the Portland Trail Blazers were the top under team at 26-13, followed by the Washington Wizards (25-14-1) and Miami Heat (24-14-1).
Rebels running again
Duke has the best over-under mark in college basketball at 12-1 and UNLV is second at 13-2-1.
Odds posted at William Hill sports book
Will the Golden Knights win the 2018 Stanley Cup?
— — —
Win Western Conference
Golden Knights; 7-2
Nashville Predators; 5-1
Winnipeg Jets; 11-2
Los Angeles Kings; 6-1
Dallas Stars; 7-1
Anaheim Ducks; 15-2
St. Louis Blues; 15-2
— — —
Win Stanley Cup
Tampa Bay Lightning; 4-1
Golden Knights; 7-1
Nashville Predators; 10-1
Winnipeg Jets; 11-1
Toronto Maple Leafs; 12-1
Los Angeles Kings; 12-1
Washington Capitals; 15-1
Anaheim Ducks; 15-1
St. Louis Blues; 15-1
Boston Bruins; 15-1
Dallas Stars; 15-1