NHL Odds, Preview, Prediction: Maple Leafs vs Red Wings (Friday, November 17)
Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images. Pictured: Alex DeBrincat #93 of the Detroit Red Wings
Maple Leafs vs. Red Wings Odds
We've got more daytime hockey coming up on Friday, as the Toronto Maple Leafs and Detroit Red Wings square off at Avicii Arena in Stockholm for Game 2 of the NHL's 2023 Global Series event.
With four games over four days, the Red Wings kicked things off by mounting a four-goal comeback to force overtime before falling to the Ottawa Senators on Thursday. The Maple Leafs will be playing their first game of the set, and also face the Minnesota Wild on Sunday.
Here's a look at the latest on both teams, and why the underdog looks like the best Maple Leafs-Red Wings bet for this matchup. Let's dive into my Maple Leafs vs Red Wings prediction today.
The Leafs headed to Europe with some positive momentum behind them after good wins over Calgary and Vancouver last weekend. Particularly encouraging: holding the high-flying Canucks to just two goals off a strong performance by Ilya Samsonov as well as solid play at 5-on-5.
The Leafs practiced on Wednesday in Stockholm and then had an off day on Thursday, so there's no indication yet about which goalie will get the nod against Detroit.
Defending has been Toronto's weakness this season, with 3.53 goals allowed per game and a team save percentage of .887 in all situations. New addition John Klingberg has taken a lot of heat for those defensive woes, and while he played against Vancouver after missing last Friday's game against Calgary with an undisclosed injury, he didn't practice in Stockholm and is doubtful for Friday's game.
While the Leafs' expected goals share at 5-on-5 is not great, at 47.59%, they win games off the back of their explosive offense.
Auston Matthews and William Nylander are both already into double digits in goals, and rookie Matthew Knies is looking like a good fit on the top line with Matthews and Mitch Marner.
Toronto is also strong on the power play, at 28.3%.
Proper preparation is a key to success for these overseas games. Based on their showing in their first game against the Ottawa Senators, it appears the Red Wings fell short in that department.
They spotted the Sens a 4-0 lead before Swedish native Lucas Raymond got them on track midway through the second period.
Once they got going, they were able to come all the way back and earn a point.
James Reimer took the loss on Thursday. And after Ville Husso returned to Detroit on Wednesday to be present for the birth of his first child, that opens the door for Alex Lyon to make his Red Wings debut.
Lyon has been the odd man out in the team's three-goalie rotation, so there are no stats to fall back on. But as you may recall, he stepped up in a big way last spring to help the Florida Panthers seize a playoff berth.
After cooling off following their red-hot start to the season, Detroit also headed to Europe on a relatively high note, with a win over the Columbus Blue Jackets and an overtime loss to the Montreal Canadiens. For the most part, the Red Wings have been quite strong offensively, and their special teams are decent.
Like Toronto, their puck possession game at 5-on-5 isn't great. Going into Thursday's game, Detroit's expected goals share was 48.57%.
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Maple Leafs vs. Red Wings
Betting Pick & Prediction
The Leafs are heavy favorites on the moneyline for this matchup. And while they will be the more rested squad, that could be counterbalanced by Detroit having already had the opportunity to test the waters at Avicii Arena and get a feel for what it's like to play in this unusual environment.
And statistically, there isn't much to choose between these two sides. The Wings have a better goal differential, while the Leafs have a slightly better points percentage. Detroit is a little healthier. And both sides have significant question marks in net, which muddies the waters when making a prediction.
At -160 on the moneyline, Toronto's implied odds of winning are nearly 62%. That margin seems high for two teams that are currently neck-and-neck in the Atlantic Division standings. For that reason, the betting value lies with the Red Wings.
Big underdogs at significant plus money, look for Detroit to put together a full 60-minute effort on Friday. That could be enough to deliver a nice payday for their backers.
Pick: Red Wings Moneyline (+155 at BetRivers) | Play to +130
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