NHL Betting Preview (April 6): Canadiens vs. Maple Leafs Predictions

One of the most iconic rivalries in hockey, if not all of the professional sports, comes to its 2023/24 conclusion tonight as the Toronto Maple Leafs take on the Montreal Canadiens. The Maple Leafs have an opportunity to move closer to a stronger playoff seeding, while the rebuilding Canadiens have a shot at playing pesky spoiler. Let’s look at what’s on the table tonight.

Bet on Maple Leafs vs. Canadiens

TOR -190
MTL +160

Bet Now!

The Maple Leafs are fairly strong road favourites, coming in at around -190 to -205 on the moneyline. This remains consistent with the overnight market.

Canadiens vs. Maple Leafs Betting Odds

Maple Leafs Moneyline Odds-190 at Betway
Canadiens Moneyline Odds+112 @ FanDuel
Puckline oddsMaple Leafs -1.5 (+131 @ Pinnacle)
Canadiens +1.5 (-138 @ FanDuel)
Totalover 6.5 +102 @ Pinnacle
under 6.5 -114 @ Pinnacle
Time/DateApril 6, 7:00 p.m. ET
TVBroadcast: Sportsnet, CBC, TVA Sports (French)
Stream: Sportsnet+
(How to watch the NHL in Canada?)

Betting the Maple Leafs (43-23-9 SU, 30-45 ATS, 40-33-2 o/u)

After an exciting win earlier in the week against the Florida Panthers, the Leafs fell flat against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Wednesday. The Bolts opened the scoring midway through the first period through the stick of Victor Hedman, which Toronto matched in the final minute of the period with a powerplay tally that marked 63 on the season for Auston Matthews.

From there though, it was all Tampa. Brayden Point and Steven Stamkos gave them a two-goal lead in the second period, and Nick Paul added a dagger with six minutes to go in the third. It wasn’t an outright awful appearance for Toronto, who did still outshoot their opponents 29-25 and looked good in stretches, but Andrei Vasilevskiy definitely won the goalie battle between himself and Joseph Woll, and a few key mistakes from the Leafs certainly didn’t help things.

It’s a shame, too, since a win there would’ve put Toronto four points back of Florida with two games in hand, and created six points of separation between their third seed and Tampa’s first wildcard position. Instead, the gap is just two points to drop down and six to jump up. Three seeding outcomes remain in play, but the tougher ones are more likely now.

Betting the Canadiens (29-34-12 SU, 48-27 ATS, 37-36-2 o/u)

The Canadiens are looking to finish their season with a glimmer of hope after a fascinating year of “not tanking, but not ready” results. The team did a valiant job of hovering within two games of 0.500 all the way through to mid-February, but a 7-14-5 run was just too much to overcome, knocking them out of any sort of competitive picture.

With that said, they’ve played some pretty good hockey of late, going 4-2 in their last six, beating teams like Colorado and Florida along the way. Unfortunately for them, they were also shell-shocked by Tampa this week, showing up on the wrong end of a 7-4 barn burner on Thursday. They’ve also gotten good results out of some of their top players lately. Most notably, Nick Suzuki has cleared the 70-point plateau for the first time in his career, putting him in the Top 5 in single-season production for Canadiens players in the salary cap era. That’s not a gaudy number, but growth is growth for the 24-year-old captain.

Last Matchup

These two teams have played each other close all season, with the most recent matchup coming down to a late third-period goal. Back on March 9th, Mike Matheson made Leafs fans nervous about a long night ahead when he scored his ninth of the season just 38 seconds into the first period, but Toronto was able to shake it off. Bobby McMann tied the game early in the second and Max Domi pulled them ahead before the intermission struck. Alex Newhook gave the Habs some life in an early third-period powerplay, but with seven minutes to go, John Tavares netted the game-winner through his 20th goal of the season.

Projected Canadiens and Leafs Lines

Today’s Toronto Maple Leafs LinesToday’s Montreal Canadiens Lines
Tyler Bertuzzi – Auston Matthews – Max Domi
Bobby McMann – John Tavares – Mitch Marner
Matthew Knies – Pontus Holmberg – William Nylander
Connor Dewar – David Kampf – Ryan Reaves

Morgan Rielly – Ilya Lyubushkin
Simon Benoit – Jake McCabe
Mark Giordano – TJ Brodie

Starting In Goal
Ilya Samsonov
21-6-7, 3.06 GAA, 0.892 SV%
Cole Caufield – Nick Suzuki – Juraj Slafkovsky
Brendan Gallagher – Alex Newhook – Joel Armia
Josh Anderson – Jake Evans – Jesse Ylonen
Michael Pezzetta – Colin White – Rafeael Harvey-Pinard

Mike Matheson – Jordan Harris
Justin Barron – David Savard
Jayden Struble – Johnathan Kovacevic

Starting In Goal
Samuel Montembeault
15-14-7, 3.03 GAA, 0.906 SV%

It’s a big day for the Maple Leafs as Mitch Marner comes back from his lower-body injury, believed to be an ankle sprain. Marner has been out since suffering his injury on March 7th.

Montreal’s lineup is relatively consistent with what they’ve been rolling the past few weeks. It’s not the deepest group, but there’s some skill spattered around the depth chart, and the top line has made its share of noise of late. Juraj Slafkovsky’s second half has been particularly impressive, with the 19-year-old shaking off some of the early-season negative attention to become one of the league’s most improved players.

Auston Matthews to score a goal


Canadiens vs. Maple Leafs Injury Concerns

The Maple Leafs are obviously pumped to get Mitch Marner back but are still banged up. Calle Jarnkrok is still week-to-week with a hand injury, Timothy Liljegren is week-to-week with an upper-body injury, and Joel Edmundson is day-to-day with an undisclosed injury.

As for the Canadiens, Christian Dvorak (pectoral surgery) is nearing a late-season return after initially being ruled out for the year in January. Joshua Roy is out with a lower-body injury. Kaiden Guhle is day-to-day with an upper-body injury, as is Arber Xhekaj.

  • In the last ten games between these two teams, the Maple Leafs are 6-4. This ten-game run dates back to October 2021. The Habs are much peskier against the puckline, going 8-2.
  • Toronto are 5-5 over their last ten games and 7-3 against the puckline. It’s a rare sight to see the Leafs faring better against the puckline than straight up. Against the total goals line, they’ve hit the over six of ten times.
  • For Montreal, they’re 4-6 in their last ten games. Against the puckline, they’re 6-4, and they’ve eclipsed the total goals line in four of ten.
  • Auston Matthews continues to lead the way for the Maple Leafs, with the most goals (8) assists (9, tied with John Tavares), points (17) and shots on goal (59) on the team over their last ten games.
  • Beyond Matthews’ ridiculous shot volume, Toronto has a lot of players peppering the net. Tyler Bertuzzi (20), Max Domi (21), Bobby McMann (28), John Tavares (24) and William Nylander (34) are all in the 20+ club.
  • Nick Suzuki leads the way in Montreal with seven goals and 11 points in his Montreal’s last ten games. Juraj Slafkovsky has the most assists with eight, and Cole Caufield leads the group in shots across that stretch with 32. Needless to say, the first line is where the action is tonight.

Canadiens vs. Maple Leafs Predictions

  • Auston Matthews watch can’t stop and won’t stop, with 70 goals being a tough goal, but not an unachievable one. For tonight, we’re just looking for #64, and that anytime goal has its best value at betano, where you can get him at -128.
  • If you think the Canadiens will play spoiler in this one, bet365 has a same-game parlay which includes a Montreal win along with points from Mike Matheson and Nick Suzuki at +400.
  • Mitch Marner will be chomping at the bit to get back into action tonight. The prop market for him is pretty light right now, though if you want to get him to make a big statement, the best value for an anytime goal is at Sports Interaction, currently at +180.
  • I can see this game going either way, but I have a hard time going against the Montreal puckline. They’ve been great at keeping even their losses close this year, and play the Leafs particularly hard. There will be an extra incentive at home today. Your best value is at Fanduel at -138.

Get Started With $100 Bet Credits from bet365!

If you’ve been checking out Canada Sports Betting’s articles but haven’t gotten into the game yourself, bet365 is offering $100 in bet credits to new members! Make a $10 deposit, place a qualifying bet of $1 using your deposited funds, and win or lose, you’ll get $100 in bet credits! Click here to claim this offer with bet365 and get started!