NHL Betting Preview (March 23): Oilers vs. Maple Leafs Odds

There might not be more of an appointment-viewing matchup in Canada these days than the Edmonton Oilers and the Toronto Maple Leafs. A team from the east and a team from the west, two supernovic megastars, and two elite supporting casts make for the potential to create instant classics every time they share the ice. Tonight, even more is at stake than usual, with a Saturday night on Hockey Night in Canada being the setting, standings points being big incentives for both teams and a pair of goal-scoring milestones on the table.

Bet on Maple Leafs vs. Oilers

TOR +115
EDM -135

The Maple Leafs are home underdogs, a rare occurrence for them. They come in at +115 on the moneyline. That number has held firm overnight.

Oilers vs. Maple Leafs Betting Odds

Maple Leafs Moneyline Odds-135
Oilers Moneyline Odds+115
Puck Line oddsMaple Leafs +1.5 (-220), Oilers -1.5 (+180)
Total Goals line6.5 goals (over -115, under -105)
Time/DateMarch 23, 7:00 p.m. ET
TVBroadcast: CBC, Sportsnet
Stream: Sportsnet+
(How to watch the NHL in Canada?)

All odds courtesy of

About the Maple Leafs (39-20-9 SU, 25-43 ATS, 37-29-2 o/u)

After losing back-to-back games for the first time in nearly two months, the Maple Leafs were quick to avoid a losing streak on Thursday. Despite being on the second half of a road back-to-back and still having illness lingering around the room, the Maple Leafs hopped on the scoreboard early and never really looked back. With some worried about Auston Matthews’ goal slump, he immediately shut concerns down with a goal sixteen seconds into the game, added another in the second, and nearly had his seventh hat trick of the year – only to have the goal overturned due to Tyler Bertuzzi being offside.

It was a weird night for Bertuzzi, who was glued to the bench for the first ten minutes of the game, causing some concern and speculation off the top. As it turns out, he was sick coming into the night and wasn’t sure if he was good to play, but ultimately caught the necessary wind to hop on the ice. He made it count, too, redeeming his offside mistake with a third-period goal. It was a successful night for the Leafs overall, as they potted seven goals en route to an easy victory.

The fact that Toronto isn’t allowing adversity to snowball against them right now is a good sign for things ahead. While this hasn’t been their best year of this era by any means, a momentum shift has become clear in the past couple of months, one which makes it hard to rule out anything ahead of them. For now, though, the goal is to get through this weekend, which will be a tough task with the Oilers and Hurricanes ahead.

About the Oilers (42-21-4 SU, 32-35 ATS, 28-36-3 o/u)

It’s been a wild season for the Oilers, who went from dead in the water in November, to one of the hottest teams in history in December and January, to their expected spot of contender as they enter the dog days of the regular season.

Things have remained pretty great of late, with the team conceding just one regulation loss since February 26th (9-1-2). Edmonton has shown the ability to win both the tight games and open things up for point nights when available, most recently shown through an 8-3 blowout of the Sabres on Thursday. Buffalo actually scored the first two goals of that game, but the Oilers were able to tie things up by the end of the second period and added five goals in fifteen minutes to close things out.

While the most impressive part of Edmonton’s push has been the growth of their team as a collective, their individual stars have still shined. Connor McDavid is chasing the 100-assist mark with 86 through 65 games, to go with 112 total points. Leon Draisaitl is already at 90 points of his own, Evan Bouchard is putting up a point-per-game season from the blue line, and Zach Hyman is on a goal-scoring heater for the ages, already scoring 48 on the season – a total that has already eclipsed his previous career high by a dozen, and his single-season high when he was in Toronto by over double.

Last Matchup

These teams last faced each other a little over two months ago, with the Oilers hosting at Rogers Place. Toronto picked up a lead just 27 seconds into the festivities via none other than Auston Matthews and doubled it up at the game’s midway mark through Morgan Rielly’s seventh goal of the season. It wasn’t meant to last, however, as Leon Draisatil got the Oilers on the board five minutes later, and Edmonton followed it up with three third-period goals to secure a come-from-behind victory.

Projected Oilers and Leafs Lines

Today’s Toronto Maple Leafs LinesToday’s Edmonton Oilers Lines
Tyler Bertuzzi – Auston Matthews – Max Domi
Matthew Knies – John Tavares – William Nylander
Bobby McMann – Pontus Holmberg – Nick Robertson
Connor Dewar – David Kampf – Noah Gregor

Morgan Rielly – Jake McCabe
Joe Edmundson – TImothy Liljegren
Simon Benoit – Conor Timmins

Starting In Goal
Ilya Samsonov
18-6-7, 3.12 GAA, 0.888 SV%
Evander Kane – Connor McDavid – Zach Hyman
Ryan McLeod – Leon Draisaitl – Warren Foegele
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins – Adam Henrique – Corey Perry
Mattias Janmark – Sam Carrick – Connor Brown

Mattias Ekholm – Evan Bouchard
Darnell Nurse – Troy Stetcher
Brett Kulak – Cody Ceci

Starting In Goal
Stuart Skinner
31-13-4, 2.58 GAA, 0.908 SV%

The Maple Leafs surprised some people ahead of their game against the Capitals by scratching defenceman TJ Brodie, a very rare healthy night off for a player who was their second-best blue liner as recently as a year ago. The 33-year-old has had a down year from his previous heights, and the results of it have made him an easy scapegoat. Leafs coach Sheldon Keefe is calling the time off a “mental reset” and hopes the rest will help him come back stronger. Brodie is in the last year of a four-year deal.

Edmonton is putting out more or less their full lineup, and I have to say, it’s one of their deepest teams in recent memory. The top nine is loaded with talent, the fourth line is respectable, the first pair is great, the bottom two pairs are passable, and while there’s somewhat of a question mark in net, Stuart Skinner has shown himself to be capable in long stretches as well.

John Tavares to score a point


Key Injuries

The Maple Leafs are a mess of injuries. Calle Jarnkrok (hand), Mark Giordano (concussion), and Mitch Marner (ankle) still don’t have timelines for their returns. Ilya Lyubushkin has been sick over the last few days, and might not draw back in tonight. Tyler Bertuzzi has also been sick, and may or may not stay in. Ryan Reaves’ eye closed up in a fight against the Flyers on Tuesday and doesn’t appear to be ready yet. Wildly, we saw Matt Murray on the ice yesterday facing some rubber, though he still seems a long ways away from game action.

The Oilers only have one injury of note, with Vincent Desharnais being day-to-day with a hand injury. He’s close to returning, so there’s a possibility we even see him tonight, though he might land as the seventh option in a healthy lineup.

  • The Maple Leafs have gotten the getter of this matchup over the last ten games against each other, dating back to February 2021. Toronto has seven wins to Edmonton’s two, though the two have gone back and forth over the last four games. The puckline has leaned towards Toronto in six of those games, and the total goals over has hit five times.
  • Across all action, Toronto is 6-4 in their last ten games, and 4-6 against the puck line. They’ve split the total goals line with five overs and five unders.
  • The Oilers are 7-3 in their last ten games, with an identical 4-6 record against the puck line. They’ve hit the over on total goals just three times.
  • Auston Matthews is suddenly back to a productive clip, sharing the team lead in points over their last ten games with William Nylander. Matthews has five goals and seven assists in that stretch, and Nylander has seven and five respectively. Matthews leads the team in shots with 41.
  • Not to be left out, John Tavares is knocking on the door for both the goals and points leads in that stretch, putting up six goals and five assists in his last ten games, thanks to an explosion over the past week.
  • Leading the Oilers in points over their last ten games, unsurprisingly, is Connor McDavid. He has a whopping eighteen points (4 G + 14 A) in that span, along with shots (38). Leon Draisaitl isn’t far behind with seventeen (6 G + 11 A, 37 shots). Leading the way in goals over that ten-game run is Zach Hyman, who has eight tallies on 34 shots.
  • Maybe the most hilarious Hyman stat: His last fifteen points have all been goals. Maybe skip the assist props with him.

Oilers vs. Maple Leafs Predictions

  • Auston Matthews has his shortest odds to score a goal in a while, sitting at -180. This is a tough spot, because I don’t think this has much practical value, but there’s a buzz around this game that has a lot of people feeling like he’s going to rise to the occasion. For now, I’d say keep an eye on the market and see where this goes. I like Matthews to step up, but if you’re a believer in getting value on your plays, this doesn’t feel like value.
  • John Tavares has played some great hockey of late and has been rewarded with eight points in his last three games. His points line still sits at 0.5, so a play at -140 to keep the streak alive could have some value.
  • This should be an offence-driven game for both teams, regardless of how the goals themselves shake out. A couple of shot prop overs I’d have my eyes on are Evan Bouchard for Edmonton (over 2.5, -120), and Toronto’s trusty secret weapon, Bobby McMann (over 2.5, +110).
  • The Hail Mary – Let’s get both milestones out of the way tonight, under the bright lights of Hockey Night in Canada. Auston Matthews scores a hat trick to get to 60? That’s +1100. Zach Hyman scores two to get to 50? That’s +800. Both at once? A whopping +8500. This is so far from a sure thing, as the odds reflect, but if you believe in these games having a flair for the dramatic, there’s fun to be had here.

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