It’s just one game but the young Leafs already look on the ropes. They’ll have to find a way to get off the mat quickly or they’ll find themselves in an 0-2 hole Saturday night. Let's have a look at the NHL odds to see how we should play.
The Toronto Maple Leafs can win because…
It’s only one game. People making their NHL Picks might not have a whole lot of faith but the reality is that it takes four games to win a series; not just one. Yes, the Bruins did win Game 1 handily but it’s mostly because the Maple Leafs came unglued. Toronto scored the first goal and was looking comfortable with the lead on the road until the Bruins scored two quick goals at the end of the first period and deflated their self-esteem.
If Toronto comes out how they did in Game 1 but finds a way to maintain, they can steal Game 2 – or at least be in much better position to win.
The Boston Bruins can win because…
The Leafs are shell-shocked. We knew that the Bruins had a huge edge in playoff experience coming into this series – Jaromir Jagr alone has played in more playoff games than the entire Maple Leafs roster – and it showed in Game 1. The playoffs are about ramping it up a notch and the Leafs just don’t know how to do it.
James Reimer might be the weakest of the 16 playoff starting goaltenders and the Bruins exposed him in Game 1. They threw everything at the net, registering 40 shots, and they scored four goals. A number of those goals were literally just cheap wristers at the net – including their first goal of the game – but they still found their way through Reimer. Now they know that’s all they have to do to win.
Outlook & Pick
Reimer looked terrible in Game 1, as did a number of the Maple Leafs youngsters. They were outmuscled and outhustled, and it’s hard to expect them to bounce-back.
The NHL odds favor the Bruins heavily and it’s easy to see why. Not only did they win Game 1, they’ve also won seven of the last nine home meetings with Toronto.
Free Pick: Bruins -1.5 +165 at BET 365