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NHL 2021: Avalanche, Lightning top Stanley Cup odds for the season

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NHL 2021: Avalanche, Lightning top Stanley Cup odds for the season

The puck is hours away from dropping on the 2021 NHL season. It’ll be a sprint to the playoffs as the 31 NHL teams are set to play 56 games over the course of the next 116 nights.

The defending champion Lightning are expected to make a big run once again, with preseason odds billing them as the top team in the new Central Division. They also hold the second-best odds to win the Cup. The No. 1 team? The Colorado Avalanche. Led by captain Gabriel Landeskog, Nathan MacKinnon, Mikko Rantanen and head coach Jared Bednar, the Avalanche are poised for big things in 2021.

Below are the odds from FanDuel.

NHL 2021 regular season odds

EAST DIVISION

Team Odds
1. Boston Bruins +250
2. Philadelphia Flyers +450
3. Pittsburgh Penguins +450
4. Washington Capitals +550
5. New York Islanders +650
6. New York Rangers +700
7. Buffalo Sabres +1600
8. New Jersey Devils  +2000

CENTRAL DIVISION

Team Odds
1. Tampa Bay Lightning +140
2. Carolina Hurricanes +400
3. Dallas Stars +490
4. Columbus Blue Jackets +850
5. Nashville Predators +850
6. Florida Panthers +900
7. Chicago Blackhawks +1800
8. Detroit Red Wings +3700

NORTH DIVISION

Team Odds
1. Toronto Maple Leafs +140
2. Edmonton Oilers +460
3. Montreal Canadiens +460
4. Calgary Flames +700
5. Vancouver Canucks +700
6. Winnipeg Jets +800
7. Ottawa Senators +4800

WEST DIVISION

Team Odds 
1. Colorado Avalanche +140
2. Vegas Golden Knights +175
3. St. Louis Blues +550
4. Arizona Coyotes +1400
5. Minnesota Wild +1400
6. Anaheim Ducks +1800
7. San Jose Sharks +2200
8. Los Angeles Kings +2400

2021 Stanley Cup odds, favorites

Team Odds
Colorado Avalanche +650
Tampa Bay Lightning +850
Vegas Golden Knights +850
Toronto Maple Leafs +1200
Boston Bruins +1400
Carolina Hurricanes +1700
Philadelphia Flyers +1700
Pittsburgh Penguins +2000
St. Louis Blues +2000
Dallas Stars +2200
Edmonton Oilers +2200
Washington Capitals +2200
Montreal Canadiens +2600
New York Rangers +2600
New York Islanders +2800
Calgary Flames +3200
Nashville Predators +3300
Columbus Blue Jackets +3500
Vancouver Canucks +4000
Florida Panthers +4800
Winnipeg Jets +4800
Arizona Coyotes +5000
Buffalo Sabres +5500
Minnesota Wild +5500
Chicago Blackhawks +6000
New Jersey Devils +6000
San Jose Sharks +6000
Anaheim Ducks +7000
Los Angeles Kings +7500
Ottawa Senators +10000
Detroit Red Wings +20000

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Warriors’ Draymond Green ejected for yelling at . . . a teammate?

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Warriors' Draymond Green ejected for yelling at . . . a teammate?

Warriors forward Draymond Green was on the receiving end of a horrible technical foul call Thursday night. To make matters worse, it was his second tech of the game, which meant he was ejected. 

Why was the call so bad? Because Green was yelling at a teammate, rookie James Wiseman, rather than an official or an opponent when he got T’d up.

Green was incredulous as he got the news during Golden State’s game against the Knicks.

Oddly, neither of the other two officials chose to confer with colleague John Butler and make sure the second-quarter technical was legitimate. They, too, had to have heard what Green was yelling inside the empty Chase Center.

MORE: Wiseman impresses Kerr with ‘Giannis play’

Warriors coach Steve Kerr told reporters after the game that one of those other officials, Ben Taylor, told him at halftime that Butler thought Green was yelling at him and not Wiseman.

Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau was just happy to see Green gone.

“Draymond, we caught a break when he got thrown out,” he said postgame, per The Associated Press. New York won the game 119-104. 

The NBA can decide to rescind Green’s second technical once it gathers all the information about it. Based on the Warriors’ reactions and Taylor’s reported admission, expect that T to go away quickly on Friday. Too little, too late, but at least some justice will be done after Green was done wrong by the officials.

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NBA trade rumors: Cavaliers to send Kevin Porter Jr. to Rockets following outburst

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NBA trade rumors: Cavaliers to send Kevin Porter Jr. to Rockets following outburst

The Cavaliers have found a taker for Kevin Porter Jr.

Cleveland is trading the second-year wing player to the Rockets, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, Shams Charania of The Athletic and Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle reported late Thursday. It will receive a protected second-round draft pick in return. The Associated Press reported the deal was pending NBA approval.

MORE: Cavs’ Sexton beats Nets’ Big 3 in double OT

The Cavs decided to move Porter after he threw a tantrum over the team giving his locker to newly acquired veteran Taurean Prince and moving him to another part of the locker room. The Athletic reported the Jan. 15 outburst included Porter throwing food and being “combative” during an argument with general manager Koby Altman.

Cleveland coach J.B. Bickerstaff on Monday spoke of Porter as a soon-to-be-former member of the organization.

“We all want to see Kevin be successful,” Bickerstaff said, per The Athletic. “I still feel that way. So whatever it is that happens in the future for him, I hope nothing but the best for him. And it’s part of our responsibility as coaches to give everyone our all and try to make the best of every situation. I can say that we did that.”

Porter did not play for Cleveland this season because of unspecified personal issues. He was charged with weapon and drug offenses last November in Ohio following a car crash. Prosecutors later dropped the charges, ESPN reported. 

He played in 50 games (three starts) for the Cavs last season as a rookie, averaging 10.0 points and 3.2 rebounds. 

Houston will waive injured guard Chris Clemons to make room for Porter on the roster, Feigen reported.

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Blue Jays preparing to play home games in Florida if necessary, report says

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Blue Jays preparing to play home games in Florida if necessary, report says

The Blue Jays are making contingency plans in the event the Canadian government prevents them from playing home games in Toronto at the start of the 2021 MLB season because of COVID-19 concerns.

The Tampa Bay Times reported Wednesday that the club is looking at its spring training facility in Dunedin, Fla., as a possible alternate site and that the Jays and Dunedin officials have held preliminary discussions about holding regular-season games at TD Ballpark.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Jan. 12 that the Canada-U.S. border would remain closed to nonessential travel through at least Feb. 21, and on Jan. 16 Ontario extended emergency measures within the province through Feb. 19 as the number of coronavirus cases continues to increase.

MORE: New stadium to replace Rogers Centre in Toronto, report says

“We would welcome the opportunity if they were to open their season here,” Vince Gizzi, Dunedin’s parks and recreation director, told the Times. “It would just be wonderful for our city, if they were restricted from going in and out of Canada, that they could play here.”

The Jays were forced to play their entire 60-game schedule last year in the U.S. after Canada prohibited them from playing at Rogers Centre amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The team played its home games at Sahlen Field in Buffalo, N.Y., the home of its Triple-A minor league affiliate, the Buffalo Bisons, beginning in mid-August. The Bisons’ 2020 season had already been canceled, making the stadium available to the Jays full time. 

The Bisons are scheduled to resume playing there next spring, although the exact opening date is unclear because MLB is still deciding when to begin the 2021 minor league season.

Dunedin is also home to Toronto’s affiliate in the Single-A Florida State League, but the Times speculated that any scheduling conflicts could be resolved by having the minor league team play on one of the fields adjacent to the stadium inside the Jays’ complex. The parent club’s home opener is scheduled for April 8. 

MORE: Blue Jays’ free-agent moves assure AL East respectability

The Times noted that MLB and the MLB Players Association would have to approve moving games outside Toronto. 

The NBA’s Raptors are dealing with a similar prohibition. They’ve moved their home games this season to Amalie Arena in Tampa, Fla., home of the NHL’s Lightning. Dunedin is about 30 minutes west of Tampa on Florida’s Gulf Coast.

The Maple Leafs are playing their home games at Scotiabank Arena in Toronto but are not scheduled to leave Canada in the regular season. The NHL placed all seven of its Canadian teams in one division for the 2021 season and are having them play just each other, with games taking place entirely within Canada.

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