National Hockey League action on Thursday evening and a pair of teams from the Atlantic Division will square off as the Detroit Red Wings battle the Toronto Maple Leafs at Scotiabank Arena in Toronto, Ontario. The Red Wings enter this game off a 6-5 shootout loss at home to the Lightning, while the Maple Leafs are off a 4-3 OT win over the Sabres on the road.
Red Wings Blow It Late Against The Bolts
The Detroit Red Wings are a team that has struggled out the gate, but they had been playing better of late. Detroit would like to grab some confidence-building wins and they had a chance to do just that in their last game as they faced the Tampa Bay Lightning at home. Detroit had a 3-0 lead in that game in the 2nd and a 5-3 lead in the 3rd, but they just couldn’t put the Bolts away. Tampa scored the tying goal with 5:02 left in regulation and then eventually won the game in a shootout. Frans Nielsen led the attack with a hat trick in the contest. He now has four goals on the year. Gustav Nyquist also had a nice game as he scored twice and now has six on the year.
— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) December 5, 2018
Absorbing the loss was Jimmy Howard, who allowed five goals on 35 shot attempts to fall to 9-10 with a 2.77 GAA on the year, while out on the road, he has gone 3-4 with a 2.93 GAA and a .916 save percentage. In his career, he has gone 6-7 with a 2.55 GAA against the Maple Leafs. The Red Wings enter this game ranked 21st in scoring, putting up 2.82 gpg and 20th in goals allowed, giving up 3.21 gpg.
Leafs Run Win Streak To Five
The Toronto Maple Leafs have been pegged by many to walk away with the hardware at the end of the season and they haven’t done a whole lot to change that way of thinking. The Leafs do not have the most points in the league, but they are not far off as they trail the Lightning by just three points for that distinction. Toronto did have a period where they struggled some, but that has not been the case of late as they come in having won their last five games in a row. The Buffalo Sabres were recently the hottest team in the league, but the Leafs handed them their 3rd loss in a row on Tuesday night, by a score of 4-3 in OT. Tampa Bay trailed the game 3-2 in the 3rd, but they were able to tie it with 5:13 left in regulation on Patric Marleau’s 7th of the year. Auston Matthews then notched his 2nd of the game and 15th of the year with three seconds left in OT.
Grabbing the win was Frederik Andersen, who allowed three goals on 41 shot attempts to improve to 16-7 with a 2.32 GAA and a .931 save percentage on the year, while here at home he has gone 7-5 with a 2.11 GAA and a.936 save percentage. In his career, he has gone 7-0 with a 2.55 GAA against the Red Wings. Toronto comes in ranked 2nd in scoring at 3.64 gpg and 5th in goals allowed at 2.61 gpg.
The Maple Leafs are:
- 25-9 in their last 34 games playing on 1 days rest.
- 20-8 in their last 28 home games vs. a team with a losing road record
The Red Wings are:
- 15-39 in their last 54 vs. a team with a winning record.
- 13-38 in their last 51 vs. the Atlantic
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
The Maple Leafs are huge favorites in this one, so I will play them on the puck line. Toronto is on a roll right now as they have won their last five games in a row and I will look for them to keep it going against one of the worst teams in the league. Toronto is a strong team at home and the Red Wings are a weak team on the road. Take Toronto in this one.
Prediction: Toronto -1.5
Full-Game Total Pick
I like the Over in this game. Detroit has allowed 3.50 gpg on the road and the Maple Leafs have averaged 3.14 gpg at home and 3.90 gpg here at home. They will put a bunch of goals up in this one, while the Detroit offense will get at least two of their own. The Over is 14-5-1 in Detroit’s last 20 games playing on one day’s rest and 5-1-1 in Toronto’s last seven when their opponent scores five goals or more in their previous game.
Prediction: Over 6