Maple Leafs vs Panthers Prediction Game 1 NHL Playoffs 5/2

Maple Leafs vs Panthers Prediction Game 1 NHL Playoffs 5/2

© Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

 

Game Preview: Panthers vs Maple Leafs (May 2, 2023) Pregame

The Florida Panthers will visit the Toronto Maple Leafs to kick off the Eastern Conference second round in the NHL playoffs on Tuesday, May 2, 2023. As hockey fans eagerly await the matchup, many are turning to NHL picks experts for predictions on the outcome. NHL picks computer algorithms and NHL picks em predictions are also widely consulted for game forecasts. According to NHL today experts, the Maple Leafs are currently favored to win with odds of -155, while the Panthers stand at +129. Over/under for the game is set at 6.5. Fans looking to make the best NHL bets today are scouring NHL picks with spread to maximize their chances of winning big. NHL experts picks today point to Toronto's superior record this season, having gone 50-21-11 overall with a 19-9-4 record against the Atlantic Division. The Maple Leafs are known for their solid offense, having scored 278 total goals to rank ninth in league play. However, the Panthers are not to be underestimated, as they have a 42-32-8 overall record and a 21-9-3 record against the Atlantic Division. They also boast a +16 scoring differential, with 288 total goals scored and 272 allowed. NHL picks and parlays may be popping up favoring the Panthers, despite their underdog status. The two teams have faced off four times during the regular season, with the Maple Leafs winning three of those games. In the last regular season matchup on April 10, the Maple Leafs emerged victorious with a 2-1 overtime win. Top performers to watch out for include Mitchell Marner with 30 goals and 69 assists for the Maple Leafs, and Matthew Tkachuk with 40 goals and 69 assists for the Panthers. Brandon Montour has also been on fire with six goals and four assists over the last 10 games for Florida. 

 

Panthers: Offensive Analysis

The Florida Panthers will head to Toronto to face the Maple Leafs in their opening game for the Eastern Conference second round playoffs. The Panthers have been impressive throughout the season with a scoring differential of +16 and have scored 288 total goals. However, they will face a tough challenge against the Maple Leafs who have a record of 50-21-11, and have scored 278 total goals to rank ninth in the league play. The Panthers have a top performer in Matthew Tkachuk who has scored 40 goals and provided 69 assists for his team. Besides him, Brandon Montour has also been in outstanding form scoring six goals and providing four assists in their last ten games. The Panthers will need their offensive players to showcase their skills and lead the team to victory in the upcoming matchup against the Maple Leafs. On the other hand, the Maple Leafs have scored at an average rate of 3.4 goals per game and have a top performer in Mitchell Marner, who has scored 30 goals and provided 69 assists for his team. Ryan O'Reilly has also been impressive in their last ten games scoring three goals and providing ten assists for his team. The Maple Leafs have been in fine form with a record of 8-2-0 in their last ten games and will look to continue their impressive run against the Panthers. In conclusion, the Panthers will need to bring their A-game to Toronto if they want to come out on top in the opening game of the Eastern Conference second round playoffs. With the Maple Leafs' form and strong offensive game, the Panthers will have to use all of their expertise to make the best NHL picks and predictions to stand a chance against the computer-generated NHL picks and expert predictions. Nonetheless, with the best NHL bets today, there is always a possibility to turn the odds in their favor, and the Panthers will look to do precisely that in their upcoming matchup against the Maple Leafs.

Panthers: Defensive Analysis

The Florida Panthers have their work cut out for them as they visit the Toronto Maple Leafs to start the Eastern Conference second round. While the Maple Leafs went 3-1 against the Panthers during the regular season, the Panthers are a resilient team that won't go down without a fight. The Panthers have a strong defense that has helped them keep games close and come away with wins. With a +16 scoring differential, the Panthers have allowed fewer goals than they have scored, which shows how their defense has been a key factor in their success. Matthew Tkachuk has been a standout performer for the Panthers with 40 goals and 69 assists, and he will need to continue to contribute on both ends of the ice in this matchup. Brandon Montour has also been playing well, scoring six goals and adding four assists over the last 10 games. In terms of injuries, the Panthers are missing Patric Hornqvist due to a concussion, while Ryan Lomberg is day-to-day with an upper-body injury. The Maple Leafs have their own injury concerns, with Victor Mete, Matt Murray, Bobby McMann, Nicholas Robertson, and Jake Muzzin all out. To come away with a win in this game, the Panthers will need to play strong defense and limit the Maple Leafs' scoring opportunities. The game could be a low-scoring affair, which would favor the Panthers and their defensive style of play. Overall, the Panthers' defense has been a key reason for their success this season, and they will need to continue playing at a high level to come away with a win against a tough Maple Leafs team. 

 

Maple Leafs: Offensive Analysis

The offense of the Toronto Maple Leafs has been strong all season long, as they scored a total of 278 goals to rank ninth in league play. Mitchell Marner has been a key contributor to their offense, scoring 30 goals and recording 69 assists. The Panthers will have their hands full trying to shut him down. In their last 10 games, the Maple Leafs have been averaging 3.9 goals per game and have won eight of those games. They have also been averaging 6.6 assists per game, showing their offensive depth and ability to create scoring opportunities. While the Panthers have a positive scoring differential, they will still need to step up their offense if they want to compete with the Maple Leafs. Matthew Tkachuk has been their top performer, with 40 goals and 69 assists on the season. However, the team has been averaging 3.5 goals per game in their last ten games, which is not enough to contend with the Leafs. Based on the recent performances of both teams, it is safe to say that the Maple Leafs have the advantage on offense going into this game. NHL picks experts and computer predictions also favor the Leafs in this matchup, with the spread at -155 for the home team. NHL picks and parlay options may include the Maple Leafs as a solid choice for best NHL bets today. All in all, the Maple Leafs will rely on their potent offense to take control of this game and set the tone for the series. The Panthers will need to find a way to slow down the Leafs' scoring if they want any chance of winning. This game promises to be an exciting matchup, and NHL today experts will be closely watching to see which team comes out on top.

Maple Leafs: Defensive Analysis

The Toronto Maple Leafs will host the Florida Panthers to open the Eastern Conference second round in the NHL playoffs. As the teams meet for the fifth time this season, the Maple Leafs have won three of the previous matchups against the Panthers during the regular season. The Maple Leafs have an impressive overall record of 50-21-11, with a 19-9-4 record against the Atlantic Division. Their defensive strategy has been effective in limiting their opponents' scoring opportunities, allowing an average of 2.7 goals per game in their last ten matches. They have also been disciplined, receiving 4.9 penalties and 12.5 penalty minutes per game, demonstrating their defensive prowess. The Panthers, on the other hand, have a solid record of 42-32-8 overall, with a 21-9-3 record against the Atlantic Division. However, their defensive performance has been inconsistent, giving up an average of 3.4 goals per game in their last ten matches. The loss of Patric Hornqvist due to a concussion could further weaken their defense, leaving them vulnerable to the Maple Leafs offensive attack. It is worth noting that the Maple Leafs have several players who have been instrumental in their defensive strategy, including Victor Mete and Jake Muzzin. However, they will be missing Mete due to a lower body injury and Muzzin for the rest of the season, making their defense more vulnerable. As the game approaches, NHL picks experts and computer-based NHL picks and EM predictions may have different opinions on which team has the advantage in defense. However, based on recent performances and the absence of key defensive players, the Maple Leafs may have a slight edge in this aspect of the game. This could be an important factor in determining the outcome of the game and the series as a whole. In conclusion, the Maple Leafs must continue to employ a disciplined and effective defensive strategy to limit the Panthers' scoring opportunities. The Panthers must find a way to overcome the loss of Hornqvist and tighten their defense to prevent the Maple Leafs from taking the lead. 

 

Injury Report

As the Florida Panthers visit the Toronto Maple Leafs to kick off the Eastern Conference second round, both teams have some key injuries to consider. For the Maple Leafs, they will be without defenseman Jake Muzzin for the rest of the season due to a spine injury. They will also miss forward Nicholas Robertson, who is out for the season due to a shoulder injury. Other players out due to injuries include Matt Murray (head), Bobby McMann (knee), and Victor Mete (lower body). Meanwhile, the Panthers are dealing with Patric Hornqvist's concussion, which will keep him out of the game. Ryan Lomberg is listed as day-to-day with an upper body injury. Both teams will have to adjust their strategies without these key players on the ice. 

Player Team Position Injury Status
Victor Mete Maple Leafs - out (lower body)
Nicholas Robertson Maple Leafs - out for season (shoulder)
Matt Murray Maple Leafs - out (head)
Bobby McMann Maple Leafs - out (knee)
Jake Muzzin Maple Leafs - out for season (spine)
Ryan Lomberg Panthers - day to day (upper body)
Patric Hornqvist Panthers - out (concussion)

 

Prediction

The Florida Panthers showed they are a force to be reckoned with in the playoffs when they defeated the top-seeded Boston Bruins in the first round. The Panthers demonstrated their resilience by bouncing back from a 2-1 series deficit to win three straight games and close out the series in six games.

One of the keys to the Panthers' success was their offensive firepower. Led by Carter Verhaeghe and Jonathan Huberdeau, the Panthers were able to put up 21 goals in the series, an average of 3.5 goals per game. In addition to their top scorers, the Panthers got contributions from all over the lineup, with eight different players scoring at least two goals in the series.

Another crucial factor was the play of their goaltenders. Sergei Bobrovsky was solid in net, posting a .926 save percentage in five games, while rookie Spencer Knight made a memorable playoff debut in Game 5, stopping 36 of 37 shots in a 4-1 victory. The Panthers' goaltending depth could be a key advantage for them going forward in the playoffs.

Pick: Panthers +129. 

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