NHL Picks Today: Rangers at Maple Leafs Odds, Picks, Live Score
Rangers Visit Talented Maple Leafs As Underdogs
The Leafs survived a sluggish, penalty-filled start to the season to score seven against the overwhelmed Jets. Coach Babcock knows that his squad won’t get away with inconsistent play for much longer, even if Frederik Andersen continues to stand on his head. New York was punished by an eager Colorado Avalanche squad which capitalized on the Rangers timid first game. Henrik Lundqvist was among the culprits, allowing three quick goals on 18 shots en route to a 4-2 loss. Coach Vigneault will make sure to ratchet up the intensity for their first game on the road.
Toronto won’t repeat the careless style of hockey that forced them to spend most of the first killing penalties, and New York won’t be timid after their coach yells at them for losing to Colorado. Five out of the last ten between these teams have been a one-goal game, and the moneyline isn’t too expensive.
Bet on the Leafs winning outright instead of taking a risky puckline. The Rangers defense isn’t convincing, the Leafs have a deep offense, and the over/under is six. Odds appear to favor scoring over a defensive battle; feel free to bet over with the potential for a push.
New York Rangers at Toronto Maple Leafs Preview
Seems like New York needs a bit more time to adjust to their new star defenseman. Kevin Shattenkirk’s terrific on offense but underwhelming as a shutdown presence, which requires the rest of the squad to compensate – including Lundqvist.
King Henrik was ordinary and Shattenkirk was -3 against the Avalanche, which sums up the Rangers early-season challenge. New York showed the potential for a relentless attack by pouring 39 shots on net, but Mika Zibanejad was the only player to convert.
Comparatively, the Leafs looked comfortable and cohesive on the ice, even if their game against the Jets started out as a slog. The speed and precision employed by the Leafs attack displays a depth that few NHL franchises possess. Toronto’s top six forwards punish mistakes ruthlessly.
Patrick Marleau potted two goals and looked like he was 29 again, gleefully ruining Winnipeg’s home opener along with Matthews and Marner. Nazem Kadri and James Van Riemsdyk also look terrific, ready to contribute the same level of scoring as last season.
The Rangers have been a tough matchup for the Maple Leafs over the past half-decade. New York has taken six of the last seven meetings, including four in a row at the ACC – dating back to November 2014. Now that the Leafs have transformed into a serious eastern conference contender with no visible weakness, New York will have to play extremely well to beat Toronto on the road. After a weak opener to the season, the Rangers aren’t ready to raise their hockey to a high level.
Typically, a team of Toronto’s strength would receive a more expensive moneyline when playing at home, but historical trends play a role in the calculation of oddsmakers.
Another trend to watch out for is the fact that no team has lost more home openers. The Maple Leafs have strong goaltending, one of the most talented lineups in the NHL, and one of the best coaches in the sport. These strengths should be enough to transcend Toronto’s previous reputation.
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