by OddsShark (@OddsShark) – Sponsored Post
The loss of captain John Tavares and a shock defeat in their playoff opener means Toronto Maple Leafs backers will have to decide whether to double down on the favorite or focus more on totals trends. The Maple Leafs are -170 favorites and the Canadiens are +150 underdogs with a 5.5-goal total on the NHL odds for Saturday at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.
In spite of a defeat on Thursday, Toronto is 8-3 in its last 11 games as a home favorite against Montreal, with the total finishing UNDER six times at sports betting sites. The Maple Leafs are 4-6 in their last 10 playoff games as the favorite. In terms of a moneyline trend, they are 8-4 in their last 12 games as a -155 to -185 favorite at home, with the total finishing UNDER nine times (how the moneyline works). The Canadiens are 6-6 in their last 12 playoff games as an underdog, with the total going UNDER nine times.
Canadiens vs Maple Leafs | OddsShark Matchup Report
The Canadiens are ahead 1-0 in the best-of-seven North Division semifinal after a 2-1 win on Thursday. Toronto had a slight edge in expected goals-for percentage, or xGF% (51.5), but was on the short end in scoring-chances share (45.4) and high-danger chances share (41.7). On the season, the Maple Leafs are 7-3-1 against the Canadiens this season, with a 25-18 edge in five-on-five goals. The Canadiens are four-for-27 on the power play and the Maple Leafs are six-for-31 during the season series. (All advanced stats are based on score- and venue-adjusted five-on-five play.)
Montreal’s forward depth won the day on Thursday. The Phillip Danault-Tomas Tatar-Brendan Gallagher and Nick Suzuki-Tyler Toffoli-Joel Armia lines that comprise Montreal’s top-six forwards corps each had an xGF% under 42 percent in the five-on-five phase. Right wing Josh Anderson, who remains worth considering in anytime scorer props, led Montreal in expected goals and was the only Canadiens forward with three shots on goal during five-on-five play. Toffoli and Corey Perry also rate consideration here in a game that could have multiple power plays per side.
Montreal is 4-3 in its last seven playoff games on the road with one day of rest. The average total in those games, albeit in a very small sample, is 3.57 goals.
Montreal’s Carey Price validated his billing as ‘Playoff Price’ on Thursday, as MoneyPuck credited the goalie with 2.33 goals saved above expected after he stopped 35-of-36 shots. Price had a 1.78 goals-against average and .920 save percentage in the 2020 playoffs, but was 1-2-1 with a 3.48 GAA and .868 save percentage against the Maple Leafs during the recent regular season.
The Maple Leafs’ best forwards generated offensive-zone heat on Thursday, but the Auston Matthews-Zach Hyman-Mitch Marner line had nothing to show after taking nearly half of Toronto’s shots (17 of 36) and posting an xGF% of nearly 90 percent. They were also 1-2-3 on Toronto in expected goals in five-on-five play, according to MoneyPuck. Second-line right wing William Nylander, who scored a goal in the course of a productive four-shot night, will now be flanked by center Nick Foligno and left wing Alex Galchenyuk with Tavares sidelined.
The Maple Leafs are 5-5 in their last 10 home playoff games with one day of rest; the average total in those matchups is 5.6 goals.
Jack Campbell saved 0.21 goals less than expected in Thursday’s defeat, as he stopped 28-of-30 Canadiens shots. Campbell was 4-1-1 with a 2.16 GAA and .919 save percentage against Montreal during the regular season.