Wednesday’s NHL bet du jour: Detroit at Toronto
It was nice to get home a relatively sweat-free winner last night with the Sharks, who simply executed on their special teams a little better than the Habs.
Moving on to Wednesday…
Red Wings +155
Outside of their sloppiest game of the season at home against the New Jersey Devils, the Toronto Maple Leafs are undefeated. They responded after the loss to the Devils with a triumphant 4-3 victory over the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday night — a win that snapped a 14-game losing streak to their longtime rivals.
Last night, the Leafs went into the Verizon Center and blanked the Washington Capitals 2-0. They have a short turnaround time for tonight’s game against a Detroit Red Wings team that has four wins in six attempts. Detroit’s only losses have come to a powerful Tampa Bay Lightning squad and in Dallas against the Stars.
Toronto swept the 2016-17 season series, winning all four games, but three of those games were decided by a goal including the unforgettable Winter Classic on New Year’s Day. While Detroit is an average team at best, they are off to a solid start and match up well against the Leafs.
Dylan Larkin, who was nowhere to be found last season, has six points in as many games, while Anthony Mantha has seven points (three goals, four assists) in six games in what could be a breakout season for the big-bodied winger. His presence in the front of the net could cause problems for Toronto backup goaltender Curtis McElhinney, who is expected to start tonight.
Over the past three seasons, McElhinney sports a .820 Home Plate Save Percentage — tied for fourth-worst in the National Hockey League with Antti Niemi. Per Rob Vollman’s 2017 version of Hockey Abstract, HP SV percentage is a statistic that measures "the percentage of shots a goalie stops that were taken inside that dangerous area in front of the net."
Toronto tends to play down to their competition, and tonight seems like a good night for that to happen once again. Detroit is fresh and could find a lot of success around the crease. Look for them to be in this game from start to finish.
Fair Odds: Red Wings +130
Nothing else for Wednesday on the ice as of now.