Bet on the Top NHL Teams

Thanks to its Northwest location and cold winter climates, hockey has become one of Pennsylvania's most popular sports. The state currently hosts seven professional level teams, including two NHL teams. 

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The Philadelphia Flyers and the Pittsburgh Penguins have called PA their home since 1967 after the league's first expansion. Since both clubs' inception, they’ve grown to be some of the largest franchises in the league with the most impressive fan bases. 

To find out more about the NHL and the league's top teams, read on. You'll also discover the best PA online sportsbook for NHL betting and much more about this globally loved sport.

Top Sites for Betting on Teams in PA

Sports betting in PA only became legal in 2018. It wasn't until 2019 that online sportsbooks began operating in the jurisdiction ready for the summer sports season. 

PA residents can now enjoy a collection of competitive online sportsbooks as big names in the business have now got their foot in the PA area. These operators offer high-quality services, lucrative welcome bonuses, and the latest in betting software. 

If you're a PA resident and are looking for a new online sportsbook, then the below four operators are the best. 

Unibet

At Unibet, new members can enjoy a sports specific welcome bonus, which consists of an insurance wager. You'll recover some money back if you're unfortunate enough to lose your first punt. 

Unibet boasts coverage of around 34 different sports. It also offers a wide betting market of over 30,000 different betting types. Members will be able to enjoy live streams of events and in-play betting options with high odds.

SugarHouse

SugarHouse is a renowned and successful operator out of New Jersey. It was one of the leaders in bringing sports betting to PA and offers its new signups a lucrative bonus worth up to $250.

SugarHouse has a comprehensive sports converge which pays particular attention to major league sports in the US and internationally. You'll also be able to find more niche sports and competitions paired with traditional betting types.

Parx

Parx is another well-known gambling brand, in mid-2019 it launched its PA site. It offers its sports bettors around 20 different sports, all with traditional and exotic betting markets attached.  

At Parx, you can also take advantage of unique offers like special bets and odd boosters. Furthermore, new members will receive a $500 risk-free bet on any sport they prefer.  

Fox Bet

Fox Bet is an extension of the famous Fox broadcasting network company. Signing up to this sportsbook will entitle you to one of the biggest bonuses on the PA market at a worth of $1,000.

Fox Bet aims to cover a wide range of sporting events from major leagues to niche competitions. Future bets and in-play wagering are available. Moreover, you can find all types of betting markets from traditional to exotic. 

Local PA Teams

As previously mentioned, Pennsylvania has two NHL teams, both of which play under the Eastern Conference as part of the Metropolitan Division. Since their inception as part of the 1967 league extension from six teams to twelve, both sides have had success over the years.

Pittsburgh Penguins

The Pittsburgh Penguins are colloquially known as the Pens. The team has faced some hardship during time as a franchise. Thankfully under Mario Lemieux and Ronald Burkle's ownership, the team dodged bankruptcy in 1999. 

The Pens now play out of the PPG Paints Arena and have some impressive records to their name. Out of the six Stanley Cup finals they’ve played, the team has won five.

They became the first back-to-back champions of the cup in 19 years when they won in 2016 and 2017.

Among the non-original six teams, they’re tied with the Edmonton Oilers for the most Stanley Cups. 

Philadelphia Flyers

PA states Philadelphia Flyers also hold several records to boast about. They were the first post-original six teams to win the Stanley Cup in 1974, and to top it off, they won again the next year. The club also has the record for the most appearances in the conference finals out of all 24 expansion teams. In total, they’ve had 16 appearances and won half of them. 

The Flyers have played out of the Wells Fargo Center since 1996. The club is renowned for its fierce rivalries with multiple other teams over the years, including the Pens.  

Current Team and Conference Structure in NHL

The NHL consists of 31 teams, which are divided into two conferences, Eastern and Western. Twenty-four of those teams are from the US, and seven are Canadian-based clubs. 

The conferences are further organized into divisions based on the team's geographic location. In the Eastern Conference, there’s the Atlantic Division and the Metropolitan Division. The Western Conference consists of the Central and Pacific Divisions. Each division has eight teams barring Central, which only has seven members. 

Eastern Conference

Atlantic

Metropolitan

Toronto Maple Leafs

Washington Capitals 

Ottawa Senators

New York Rangers 

Tampa Bay Lightning 

Pittsburgh Penguins

Florida Panthers

Philadelphia Flyers

Montreal Canadiens 

New York Islanders

Detroit Red Wings

New Jersey Devils

Boston Bruins 

Carolina Hurricanes

Buffalo Sabres

Columbus Blue Jackets 

 

Western Conference 

Central

Pacific

Winnipeg Jets

Vegas Golden Knights

St. Louis Blues

Vancouver Canucks

Nashville Predators 

San Jose Sharks

Dallas Stars

Anaheim Ducks

Minnesota Wild 

Arizona Coyotes

Colorado Avalanche

Calgary Flames

Chicago Blackhawks 

Edmonton Oilers

 

Los Angeles Kings 

Bet on The Playoffs: Where the Best Teams Meet

The NHL sporting year is divided into three parts. The preseason, regular season, and the postseason which includes the Stanley Cup playoffs. The playoffs typically occur in April and run until June. The teams that enter qualify through their regular-season points.  

The playoffs consist of four rounds based on a best-of-seven series format to crown the champion. 

Playoff Brackets

After the regular season has played out, the top 16 teams based on the regular-season points (eight from each conference) qualify for the playoffs. 

The top three teams out of each division will gain automatic qualification. The remaining four spots are then given to the next two highest-scoring teams from each conference regardless of their division. These teams are known as wild cards. 

Playoff Game Location Framework

The first round will see the division winner with the highest points from each conference face off against the wild card with the lowest scores. The wild card with the highest points will match up against the other divisional winner. 

Second and third-place teams from every division will meet in the first round. The winners from these games then meet in the second round to determine the four teams playing in the Conference Finals. The two winners of the Conference Finals will then go head to head for the Stanley Cup. 

During the first and second rounds, the home-ice advantage is given to the highest placed team in the regular-season standings. The Conference Finals and the Stanley Cup home-ice advantage is given to the team that has the best regular-season record regardless of the previous standings.

Wildcards & Byes

As mentioned, there are four wild cards in the Stanley Cup playoffs. While these teams face off against the division winners for a qualifying spot, the top-seeded teams will automatically proceed to receive a bye-round. 

NHL Team Performance

The NHL was formed 1917, and since its inception, the teams have been impressing fans with their performances season after season. Out of the now 26 teams, some have seen more success than others, with the Montreal Canadiens being known as the best NHL team. 

PA Team Legacy and Past Performance

Let's take a closer look at the past performances of the two PA teams. 

Pittsburgh Penguins

The Penguins are a more successful team in comparison to the Flyers. They have five Stanley Cup titles to their name. The team has also won eight Division Championships and six Conference Championships. The club holds a single President's Trophy. 

The Pens' most recent victory was when they won the 2016/17 Stanley Cup. The win was the second one for the club in a row, making them the first team since 1997/98 to defend their title. The finals were a nail-biter with the team winning two, then losing two before finally bringing it home with a final two victories.  

Philadelphia Flyers

The Flyers have only won two Stanley Cup titles over their history. However, they do boast an impressive collection of Division Championships at 16. They also hold eight Conference Championships titles. The team's point percentage is 57.5%, making them thrift in the entire league behind the Golden Knights and Montreal Canadiens.

The Flyers' last significant victory was during 2010/11 when they last won the Division Championships. 2018/19 seemed to be an unlucky year for the team, which began with lots of firing and hiring. The club also faced issues with racial controversy and fell apart, missing the playoffs. 

Now under new coaching from Alain Vigneault, the team seems to be on the rise. They managed to gain a tying record for the best November in team history with 10-3-4. At the beginning of the year, the team played a nine-game winning streak. It landed them in second place in the Metropolitan Division standings only one point behind the Capitals. 

Best Teams in NHL and Past Performance

The Montreal Canadiens were founded in 1909. They're the longest-operating hockey team in the world and predate the beginning of the NHL. The club has the record for the most Stanley Cups with 25 to their name. However, they last held the cup back in 1993. Their most recent success was the 2016/17 Championships, which they had won consecutively for three years. 

The St. Louis Blues are the reigning Stanley Cup champions. Although they aren’t considered one of the more successful teams in the league, they shouldn't be overlooked for their recent victory. Their 2018/19 win was their first since they were founded in 1967. The club has had 42 playoff appearances out of the 52 seasons and has made the cup finals four times. A win was well overdue for the Blues.

Notable Team Rivalries in NHL

The NHL is known to have some of the fiercest and most entertaining rivalries of any major league sport.

Team Vs. Team Rivalry

Reason for Rivalry
Philadelphia Flyers Vs. Pittsburgh Penguins  One of the most famous rivalries that began the day the teams were formed in the same territory. They’re division rivals and meet frequently.
Ottawa Senators Vs. Toronto Maple Leafs The teams are division rivals. In the 2000s, the team met four times in the playoffs, and Toronto swept Ottawa away every time.
New Jersey Devils Vs. New York Rangers Known as the cross-river rivals because these teams play out of stadiums less than ten miles apart. Causing a fierce territory rivalry between the players and fans.
NewYork Islanders Vs. Washington Capitals A long-standing rivalry dates back to the 80s when the Islanders won nearly every matchup between 1983 and 1987.  The teams faced off for the most memorable playoff series in 1987, where the Islanders yet again walked away with the overall victory.

Notable NHL Players in PA

PA has seen many talented NHL players come and go over the years. Below are a few of the most noteworthy.

Mario Lemieux

Lemieux was the number one selection in the 1984 NHL Draft. He’d just completed a 133 goal and 282 point season in the Major Junior Hockey League. He played for the Pittsburgh Penguins from 1984 to 2006 before taking over ownership of the club. 

He’s accumulated a myriad of achievements and records during his career. These include leading the Pens to two consecutive Stanley Cups in 1991 and 1992. He then led them as an owner to three more wins in 2009, 2016, and 2017.

He’s renowned for his gifts as a playmaker, his fast skating despite his size, and wit on the ice.

Jaromir Jagr

Jagr is considered one of the greats and began his career with a record-breaker. When he debuted with the NHL, he was the youngest player. Overall, Jagr has had a long and successful career that has seen him play for over ten hockey teams. These include the Flyers and the Pens.

He's famous for having the second-most points in NHL history and being the most productive European player. 

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Sacha Kinser is the SEO Content Manager for the US, UK, Canadian, and New Zealand markets. Her skills have developed from years of experience in curating content strategies and building brand identity through multimedia content online. 


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