Maple Leafs vs Lightning Game 1 Prediction NHL Playoffs 4/18

Maple Leafs vs Lightning Game 1 Prediction NHL Playoffs 4/18

© Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

 

Game Preview: Lightning vs Maple Leafs

The Toronto Maple Leafs host the Tampa Bay Lightning in game one of the Eastern Conference first round playoffs. The NHL picks experts predict a tightly contested matchup with the Maple Leafs being favored at -158 and the Lightning at +135. The over/under is set at 6, making for an exciting game for both NHL picks and parlay. The Lightning visit the Maple Leafs to start the NHL Playoffs, and both teams are looking to come out strong. Toronto is 15-7-4 against the Atlantic Division, and the Maple Leafs have a 22-6-5 record in games they have fewer penalties than their opponent. Meanwhile, the Lightning is 46-30-6 overall with a 12-13-1 record against the Atlantic Division. However, they have given up 252 goals while scoring 280 for a +28 scoring differential, showing their strength on the offensive end. The NHL picks computer and NHL today experts are likely to side with the Maple Leafs, given their impressive form of late. In their last ten games, they have a 7-1-2 record, averaging 3.1 goals and giving up only two goals per game. Meanwhile, the Lightning has a 4-6-0 record in their last ten games, where they've been slightly weaker defensively. Injuries may play a role in the game, with Toronto's Victor Mete out with a lower-body injury and Nicholas Robertson out for the season with a shoulder problem. The Lightning's Tanner Jeannot is currently day-to-day with a lower-body injury. 

 

Lightning: Offensive Analysis

The Lightning offense has been inconsistent over the past ten games, averaging 3.3 goals per game but with a -0.2 goal differential. They will need to step up their game against the Maple Leafs if they want to advance in the playoffs. Steven Stamkos remains the top performer on the team with 33 goals and 51 assists, but Brayden Point has been a key player for the Lightning with seven goals and six assists over the last ten games. However, the rest of the team has struggled to produce consistently. The Lightning will need to find ways to score against the Maple Leafs, who have a strong defense anchored by Auston Matthews and Mitchell Marner. They will also need to minimize their penalties, as the Maple Leafs have a strong record in games where they have fewer penalties than their opponents. While the Lightning have the potential to put up big numbers on the scoreboard, their recent inconsistency and the strength of the Maple Leafs' defense make it a risky bet for NHL picks experts, NHL picks computer programs, and NHL picks EM predictions. However, those looking for NHL today experts picks or the best NHL bets today should keep an eye on Stamkos and Point, who have the potential to create scoring opportunities even against a tough defense. Overall, the Lightning offense will need to step up their game if they hope to advance in the playoffs with nhl picks and parlay bets, nhl predictions today, nhl picks for today, and nhl picks odds all working against them.

Lightning: Defensive Analysis

As the Tampa Bay Lightning head into their first-round playoff series against the Toronto Maple Leafs, their defense will play a crucial role in determining the outcome of the series. The Lightning ended the regular season with a 46-30-6 record, which placed them third in the Atlantic Division but they have a strong defensive group that can hold up against any team. Led by Victor Hedman, the Lightning's defense is undoubtedly one of the most talented in the league. Hedman has been a stalwart on the blue line for years, logging heavy minutes while providing offensive output. He'll be joined by Ryan McDonagh, who has been extremely solid defensively while chipping in offensively when needed. Further down the lineup, the Lightning can look to Mikhail Sergachev and Erik Cernak, two young defenders who have shown that they can handle top-line minutes. Both players are capable of shutting down opposing teams' top players while providing some offensive upside. The Lightning's defensive group will be particularly important against a talented Maple Leafs team that boasts high-end talent. Steven Stamkos and Nikita Kucherov are excellent two-way forwards who can contribute offensively, but the defense will be responsible for shutting down Toronto's high-powered offense. NHL picks experts and computer models may give the Maple Leafs the edge, but the Lightning's defensive ability is not to be overlooked. They have the talent and depth to match up with any team in the league, and they'll need to be at their best if they want to make a deep playoff run. In terms of NHL picks and parlays, expert picks might be leaning towards the Maple Leafs, but the Lightning's defense should keep them competitive in every game. If they can keep the Maple Leafs' offense in check, they'll have a chance to win every matchup. In conclusion, the Lightning's defense will play a crucial role in their playoff series against the Maple Leafs. They have the talent and depth to hold their own against any team, and they'll need to be at their best if they want to make a deep playoff run. Despite the challenges ahead, there's no doubt that the Lightning's defense is up for the task.

 

Maple Leafs: Offensive Analysis

The Toronto Maple Leafs are a force to be reckoned with when it comes to offense. With top performers like Mitchell Marner and Auston Matthews, the Maple Leafs are a threat to any team they face. They have scored an average of 3.1 goals per game over their last 10 games. But with the playoffs underway, the Maple Leafs will need to step up their game even more. They will face tough competition in the Tampa Bay Lightning, a team that has given up fewer goals and has a better scoring differential than the Maple Leafs. While the Maple Leafs have a record of 15-7-4 against the Atlantic Division, they will need to play their best game yet to defeat the Lightning. And with injuries to key players like Jake Muzzin and Nicholas Robertson, they will need to rely on their remaining players to step up and score crucial goals. As for NHL picks experts and NHL picks computer predictions, they may favor the Maple Leafs due to their strong offense. But in a playoff setting where anything can happen, it's anyone's game. The Maple Leafs will need to bring their best offense and make smart decisions on the ice to come out on top.

Maple Leafs: Defensive Analysis

As the Toronto Maple Leafs prepare for the Eastern Conference first round game against Tampa Bay Lightning, their defense will be under scrutiny. The Maple Leafs have a solid defense but have struggled at times this season, giving up an average of 2.8 goals per game. Against a potent Tampa Bay offense, the Maple Leafs defense will have to step up. One key aspect of the Maple Leafs defense is their ability to limit their opponents' power play opportunities. Toronto has a penalty killing percentage of 77.7% this season, which is among the best in the league. They will need to continue this trend against a Tampa Bay team that has a deadly power play, which ranks third in the league with a success rate of 23.8%. The Maple Leafs defense will need to rely on their top defenseman, Morgan Rielly, to anchor their defensive unit. Rielly has been an offensive force for the Maple Leafs this season, scoring eight goals and 38 assists while playing almost 23 minutes per game. He has also been solid defensively, with a plus-minus rating of +19. Another player to watch on the Maple Leafs defense is TJ Brodie. Brodie has been a reliable defensive presence for the team, averaging almost 22 minutes per game and registering a plus-minus rating of +22. He has also chipped in offensively, with four goals and 15 assists this season. In terms of goaltending, the Maple Leafs will turn to Jack Campbell. Campbell has performed admirably in his first full season as a starting goaltender, posting a 17-4-2 record with a .921 save percentage and a 2.15 goals against average. However, he has limited playoff experience, so it remains to be seen how he will perform under the pressure of the postseason. Overall, the Maple Leafs defense will need to be on top of their game if they hope to contain the high-powered Tampa Bay offense. Their penalty killing unit will be crucial, as will the performances of Rielly, Brodie, and Campbell. If they can limit their mistakes and capitalize on their opportunities, the Maple Leafs will have a chance to come out on top in this series.

Injury Report

As the Tampa Bay Lightning visit the Toronto Maple Leafs for the first round of the Eastern Conference playoffs, both teams have several players out with injuries. The Maple Leafs have defenseman Victor Mete out with a lower body injury, goaltender Ilya Samsonov day-to-day with an undisclosed injury, and winger Nicholas Robertson out for the season with a shoulder injury. Defenseman Erik Gustafsson is day-to-day with an upper body injury, goaltender Matt Murray is day-to-day with a head injury, defenseman Mark Giordano is day-to-day with an undisclosed injury, and winger Bobby McMann is out with a knee injury. Defenseman Jake Muzzin is out for the season with a spine injury, and forward Sam Lafferty is day-to-day with an undisclosed injury. For the Lightning, winger Tanner Jeannot is day-to-day with a lower body injury. Both teams will need to rely on their depth to make up for their missing players in this crucial playoff matchup. 

Player Team Position Injury Status
Victor Mete Maple Leafs Defense Out (lower body)
Ilya Samsonov Maple Leafs Goalie Day to day (undisclosed)
Nicholas Robertson Maple Leafs Forward Out for season (shoulder)
Erik Gustafsson Maple Leafs Defense Day to day (upper body)
Matt Murray Maple Leafs Goalie Day to day (head)
Mark Giordano Maple Leafs Defense Day to day (undisclosed)
Bobby McMann Maple Leafs Forward Out (knee)
Jake Muzzin Maple Leafs Defense Out for season (spine)
Sam Lafferty Maple Leafs Forward Day to day (undisclosed)
Tanner Jeannot Lightning Forward Day to day (lower body)

 

Prediction

The NHL playoffs are finally here, and the Tampa Bay Lightning will be looking to defend their title as they take on the Toronto Maple Leafs in game one of the Eastern Conference first round. The teams split their regular-season series, with each team winning two games. However, the Lightning have a wealth of playoff experience, while the Maple Leafs have struggled to advance past the first round in recent years. The Lightning are also healthier than the Maple Leafs, who are dealing with several injuries. While the Maple Leafs may be slight favorites in this game, we're picking the Lightning to come out on top and take an early series lead. 

 

Pick: Lightning (+135)

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