It’s the second of a back-to-back for the Toronto Maple Leafs on Wednesday night when they close out their season series with neighbouring Buffalo.
Maple Leafs vs Sabres Betting Analysis
Wednesday is the second-to-last time the Leafs will play a second game in 24 hours this season. They also have a back-to-back on April 1 at the New York Islanders and April 2 at home vs. the Carolina Hurricanes. This also wraps up a three-game trip.
Buffalo started this season extremely strong but has fallen way off and will miss the playoffs for an eighth straight year. There’s some good young talent there, however, and it’s likely the team finally plays extra hockey next season.
Toronto is looking to sweep the season series for the first time since the NHL instituted shootouts to replace tie games. The Leafs have outscored the Sabres a combined 14-8 in the three games, with the previous two won by multiple goals. John Tavares (2G, 3A) and Auston Matthews (3G, 2A) lead the Leafs with five points each vs. Buffalo, while Mitch Marner has four (1G, 3A). Frederik Andersen won all three and has a 2.60 goals-against average and .929 save per centage.
Jack Eichel (4G) and Sam Reinhart (2G, 2A) lead the Sabres with four points each vs. Toronto. Linus Ullmark played in all three and is 0-2-1 with a 3.84 GAA and .878 SV.
The Leafs are just 7-19 in their past 26 trips to Buffalo. The total has gone over in the past five there.
Toronto Maple Leafs
On Tuesday, the Leafs lost their second in a row, 3-0 in Nashville. Pekka Rinne showed why he’s the reigning Vezina Trophy winner in shutting out Toronto for the second time this season. This time, he stopped 22 shots in career shutout No. 55. Nashville became only the second team in NHL history to sweep a two-game series with Toronto with a pair of shutouts. Philadelphia was the other in 1992-93. Andersen stopped 17 shots but likely takes a seat 24 hours later for Garret Sparks. He was bombed for six goals in Saturday’s loss in Ottawa and is 3-5-0 on the road this season with a 3.77 GAA and .887 SV.
Buffalo snapped a seven-game losing streak on Sunday with a 4-3 home shootout win over St. Louis. Buffalo got goals from Johan Larsson (sixth of season), Evan Rodrigues (ninth) and Conor Sheary (13th). Rodrigues ended an 18-game goalless drought. Reinhart scored the deciding goal in the shootout after nearly winning the game at the end of overtime but hitting the post. Buffalo has struggled to score this season, averaging just 2.71 goals per game. Eichel leads with 72 points, while Jeff Skinner is first on the team with 37 goals. The goaltending also has been shaky; Carter Hutton made 30 saves in Sunday’s win. He has been a bit better than Ullmark this season, but they largely rotate in net. Buffalo has won just eight of its past 29 games overall.