by OddsShark (@OddsShark) – Sponsored Post
The Toronto Maple Leafs carry fresher bodies and incentive into a matchup that has played toward favourites over the last three seasons. The Maple Leafs are -150 home favourites while the Carolina Hurricanes are +130 underdogs with a 6.5-goal total on the NHL odds for Saturday at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.
The favourite is 5-1 in the last six games in this matchup. Toronto is also 4-1 over five games against the Metropolitan Division, but the Maple Leafs are 3-8 in their last 11 home games as a -130 to -150 favourite at sports betting sites with the total finishing UNDER seven times. The Hurricanes, who were defeated 5-2 by the New York Rangers on Friday, are 6-2 in their last eight away games when they also played the previous day. They are also 4-3 in their last seven away games against the Atlantic Division.
Hurricanes at Maple Leafs | OddsShark Matchup Report
The total has gone OVER in five of the teams’ last seven matchups, but all of those higher-scoring contests occurred in the first three months of the season. The total has gone UNDER in the last three Carolina-Toronto post-January 1 matchups.
The Hurricanes are just outside of the playoff pack at 34-22-4, including a more-than-respectable 6-6 mark as an away underdog. Carolina, led up front by the Sebastian Aho-Andrei Svechnikov-Teuvo Teravainen line, has one of the NHL’s most active attacks, ranking first in the league in five-on-five shot-attempt percentage (54.3 percent). The Hurricanes are 11th in goals scored (3.17 per game) and 10th in goals against (2.82). Carolina’s power play ranks 10th (21.7 percent) and its penalty killing unit ranks seventh (82.6).
Petr Mrazek started in Carolina’s defeat against the Rangers on Friday, so the starting assignment is likely to fall to ex-Leaf James Reimer, who has a 14-6-2 record with a 2.67 goals-against average and .914 save percentage. Reimer is off to a slow start in February, though, with a 3.55 GAA and .885 save percentage in four games.
The Maple Leafs, who are 32-22-8, are coming off a 4-0 home win against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Thursday, where they blanked the eighth-highest scoring team in the NHL. Centers Auston Matthews, John Tavares and Alex Kerfoot each contributed points as Toronto, which is fifth in the NHL in five-on-five shot-attempt percentage (52.5 percent), achieved an offensive balance to buttress their defensive zone play. The Maple Leafs are third in goals scored (3.48 per game) and 26th in goals against (3.23). On special teams, Toronto has the NHL’s fourth-ranked power play (24.4 percent) and the penalty killing unit ranks 25th (76.7).
Frederik Andersen, who has a 25-12-6 record with a 2.91 goals-against average and .908 save percentage, is likely to start in goal for Toronto. Andersen logged a 24-save shutout against the Penguins on Thursday, but has a 3.27 GAA and .874 save percentage in five games in February.
The Maple Leafs play five of their next six games on the road, beginning with a two-game trip to face the Tampa Bay Lightning on Tuesday and the Florida Panthers on Thursday.