NHL Hockey Betting: Toronto Maple Leafs at Montreal Canadiens

NHL Hockey Betting:  Toronto Maple Leafs at Montreal Canadiens&h=235&w=320&zc=1

Busy night of hockey for Saturday with 12 games on the schedule. In this preview we’ll take a look at the latest renewal of one of the most revered rivalries in any sport. The Montreal Canadiens and Toronto Maple Leafs for almost a century now (since 1917) and tonight’s game does have one added component–the Habs can make NHL history with a regulation victory. The Leafs are in ‘rebuilding mode’ under new coach Ken Hitchcock but they won’t let Montreal win without a fight.

The Montreal Canadiens have won just about every award and record imaginable in hockey but they have a chance to make history tonight–by tying the best start in NHL history. They’re already off to the best start in franchise history at 7-0-0. A regulation win tonight would put them at 8-0-0 and tie them with two other teams for the all time NHL record. Should they get the win tonight then a victory on Tuesday night in Vancouver would give them sole possession of the NHL record at 9-0-0. They’re already 5 points ahead of the second place Tampa Bay Lightning–who have nothing to be ashamed of with their 5-2-1 start to the season. The Canadiens own the NHL’s best goal differential at +21–the second and third place teams aren’t even close (Washington +11, Nashville and St. Louis +10).

There’s really not much to recommend Toronto in this spot. The Canadiens hold the advantage in every phase of the game and particularly in goal where Toronto’s Jonathan Bernier is winless at 0-3-1 and Montreal’s Cary Price is undefeated at 6-0-0. Mike Hitchcock is a great coach but Toronto is arguably the biggest rebuilding job in the league. Buffalo had some decent talent on hand before they drafted Jack Eichel. Edmonton had a stockpile of underachieving first round draft picks. The Leafs had very little and Hitchcock is trying to completely rebuild the team’s culture.

The price on the game is high but that’s for a reason. You’re getting the best team in the sport and the best goaltender on the planet facing a team in the lower third of the league. Hitchcock has the Leafs playing hard but that won’t be enough here.


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