by OddsShark (@OddsShark) – Sponsored Post
Bettors will have to decide whether the Toronto Maple Leafs’ defensive inconsistency leaves them enough margin for error in a matchup that has historically gone UNDER. The Maple Leafs are -175 away favourites while the Los Angeles Kings are +155 home underdogs with a 6.5-goal total on the NHL odds for Thursday at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.
The Maple Leafs, who also visit the Anaheim Ducks on Friday, are 14-6 in their last 20 games when they were also playing the following day, with the total finishing OVER 12 times at sports betting sites. They are 8-5 in their last 13 games as an away favourite with the total finishing OVER nine times. The Kings are 9-11 over their last 20 home games, but the total has gone UNDER in four of their last five outings. Also, 10 of the last 15 Toronto-Los Angeles matchups have finished UNDER.
Maple Leafs at Kings | OddsShark Matchup Report
The Maple Leafs are 35-24-8 and are coming off a 5-2 defeat against the San Jose Sharks on Tuesday, where they struggled to activate an offence that has them sixth out of 31 teams in the NHL in five-on-five shot-attempt percentage (52.0 percent). That being said, top-line center Auston Matthews is near his peak form with a three-game goal streak. The Maple Leafs are first in goals scored (3.49 per game) and 28th in goals against (3.27). On special teams, the Toronto power play is ranked sixth (23.4 percent) and the penalty killing unit is ranked 26th (76.6).
Frederik Andersen, who has a 28-13-6 record with a 2.96 goals-against average and .906 save percentage, will get the start after backup Jack Campbell played in San Jose. Andersen, who hasn’t started since Saturday, has a 1.83 GAA and .942 save percentage in 11 games this season against Pacific Division teams.
The Kings are 25-35-6 as they take a three-game win streak into the first matchup of a nine-game homestand. Led up front by center Anze Kopitar, the Kings’ offensive issues are more about shot quality than quantity as they are fourth in five-on-five shot-attempt percentage (53.3 percent), and that volume could create challenges if Toronto’s makeshift defence corps has another tough night. The Kings are 30th in goals scored (2.48 per game) and 18th in goals against (3.08). The Los Angeles power play is ranked 22nd (17.8 percent) and the penalty killing unit is ranked 28th (76.2).
Jonathan Quick, who has a 14-22-4 record with a 2.91 goals-against average and .901 save percentage, could also be making his first start since Saturday.
Following their game against Anaheim on Friday, the Maple Leafs have a three-day break before hosting the Tampa Bay Lightning on Tuesday in a potential playoff preview.