Maple Leafs Slight Favorites
Friday’s NHL betting card serves up a top billing for fans to sink their teeth into with the Carolina Hurricanes and Toronto Maple Leafs colliding at the Scotiabank Arena in a pivotal Eastern Conference showdown with playoff implications.
There’s no doubt about the quality of both of these high flyers. Their remarkable seasons speak loudly as the Canes and Maple Leafs hobnob among the best of what the 2022-23 NHL season has to offer. And true to form, the sports betting market is appropriately tight, offering value on both sides of the coin for your NHL picks.
Yes, We Canes
Carolina continues to hang on to first place in the Metropolitan Division, refusing to take its foot off the pedal in the final weeks of the regular season. As things currently stand, the Hurricanes are 44-14-6 on the season with 96 points from 66 games. But the margins are thin, the room for error minimal. Carolina only has a one-point lead over its closest rival, the New Jersey Devils, albeit with two games in hand.
The last 10 games have seen Carolina put together a 6-4-0 run, which includes a 4-2-0 record at home and a 2-2-0 record on the road. Most recently, the Canes snapped a two-game losing streak with a 5-3 win over the Winnipeg Jets at home.
From start to finish, Carolina was on the front foot. Jaccob Slavin opened the scoring in the first period, Jasperi Kotkaniemi scored twice and had an assist and Frederik Andersen stopped 21 of 24 shots.
The Canes average 3.30 goals per game (12th highest) and they’re conceding an average of 2.50 goals per game (2nd). The power play is a modest 21.2 % while the penalty kill is a stellar second-best in the league at 84%.
Brotherly love 😂 pic.twitter.com/4Otr6Zr8wx
— Carolina Hurricanes (@Canes) March 15, 2023
Maple Leafs Desperate To Get Back On Track
Although the Atlantic Division title is well out of reach thanks to the Boston Bruins’ pace-setting ways, Toronto is still motivated to maintain its position as the second-best team in the division with a 40-18-9 record with 89 points from 67 games.
One point separates Toronto from its closest rivals, the Tampa Bay Lightning, who are hoping to give them a run for their money down the stretch. But the Maple Leafs have dropped points in their last two games behind a 4-3 loss to the Buffalo Sabres and a 2-1 shootout loss to the Colorado Avalanche.
As a result of this two-game losing streak, the Maple Leafs slipped to a 6-3-1 record in their last 10 that is comprised of a 2-1-1 record at home and a 4-2-0 record on the road.
Toronto is the eighth-highest scoring team (3.39) and the third-best on the power play (25.2%). The penalty kill is a solid 80.7% (13th), and defensively, the Maple Leafs rank fifth with 2.66 goals allowed.
Hurricanes vs Maple Leafs Game Injuries
Hurricanes vs Maple Leafs Head-to-Head
Carolina is 4-5-1 in its last 10 games versus Toronto while the total has gone 5-5-0 in betting online markets. Toronto is 6-4-0 during this same period.
The Maple Leafs won the last meeting between this pair, edging the Hurricanes 3-1 in Carolina on Nov.6. It marked Toronto’s third straight win over the Canes.
Hurricanes vs Maple Leafs Game Information
- Game: Hurricanes (44-14-8) vs Maple Leafs (40-18-9)
- Location: Scotiabank Arena, Toronto
- Day/Time: Friday, March 17, 7:07 p.m. ET
- Hurricanes vs Maple Leafs Live stream: NHL.TV
Hurricanes vs Maple Leafs Betting Lines
Hurricanes vs Maple Leafs Picks and Prediction
If these two teams live up to their billings, this should be a fantastic contest for NHL betting fans to sink their teeth into. Carolina is no stranger to the upset and will be further motivated to snap its recent losing trend against the Maple Leafs.
The hosts have the firepower to put the Hurricanes on their heels while their defense is more than capable of stifling any opposing offense.
All told, this is a bit of a coin toss for NHL picks. The Hurricanes could win. The Maple Leafs should win. Push comes to shove, we’re leaning toward the Canes. Streaks end inevitably and the Canes will want to end a 3-0 losing run if only to stay ahead in the Metropolitan Division title race.
Toronto is listed at -125 in our Vegas lines. So, if you wager $100 on the Maple Leafs, there’s a chance to win $80. Carolina is +105, with a chance to win $105 on a $100 wager.
The implied probability attached to the betting lines gives Toronto a 55.56% chance to win, with the Hurricanes at 48.78%.