NHL Hockey Betting: Ottawa Senators at Toronto Maple Leafs

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

Do the Toronto Maple Leafs even care anymore? We’ll find out tonight on this ‘Hockey Night in Canada’ broadcast from the Air Canada Centre as the hometown Maple Leafs take on the surging Ottawa Senators. In any other season this would be a highly pitched battle between two ‘in province’ rivals. This year the dynamics are different. The Maple Leafs are sinking like a stone to the bottom of the Atlantic Division. They’ve got the second wost record in the Eastern Conference but they’ve still got some ‘work to do’ if they’re going to catch the Western Conference bottom feeders Edmonton and Arizona. The Edmonton Oilers have been playing like a legitimate hockey team of late so the Leafs should easily ‘catch’ them and if the balls bounce right will get the chance to choose a franchise player in Connor McDavid or Jack Eichel.

The Ottawa Senators have had a strange season but not necessarily in a bad way. For most of the year they were the personification of mediocre–right around .500, in the middle of the pack in every statistical category, so on and so forth. Things looked grim when goaltending injuries forced them to turn the starting job over to a goalie with no NHL experience and expectations were that they’d soon be out of the playoff picture. It didn’t quite work out that way. Andrew Hammond aka ‘The Hamburglar’ has made himself into a superstar in a matter of weeks. That’ll happen when you go 14-1-1 to start your career as a NHL goaltender. Throw in a 1.91 GAA and a .938 save percentage and you’ve got a great story. Hammond will most likely get the night off here–he appeared to be in pain after his first career regulation loss so Frederik Anderson will be in net.

Not a hard game to handicap. One team wants to fight their way into the playoffs, the other team wants to fight their way into the draft lottery. Were it earlier in the season there would be a chance that the Leafs would ‘play for pride’ but not now. Ottawa should win this game.


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