Toronto Maple Leafs vs. New York Rangers Prediction: Should You Back the Home Dog?

The New York Rangers, one of the NHL best home teams this season, find themselves underdogs in tonight's matchup as the Toronto Maple Leafs make a trip to Manhattan.
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Toronto Maple Leafs vs. New York Rangers Prediction: Should You Back the Home Dog?

Two of the Eastern Conference’s top teams do battle in Madison Square Garden tonight. The Toronto Maple Leafs are currently in third in the Atlantic Division with a 24-9-3 record, good for 51 points. The Leafs are on the fifth game of a six-game road trip having gone 2-1-1 so far. 

The New York Rangers are currently 25-10-4 with 54 points which is tied for first in the Metropolitan Division with the Carolina Hurricanes. New York is home after a 5 game road trip which saw them go 3-2. This is the second meeting this season with the Leafs claiming a 2-1 home win on October 18th. The expected goalie matchup puts the top 2 Vezina contenders, in my opinion, in Jack Campbell and Igor Shesterkin.

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Toronto Maple Leafs vs New York Rangers Prediction

Toronto comes into this game with a very solid 10-5-2 road record where they average 3.41 goals per game and 2.88 goals against. They have been an offensive juggernaut all season long. They have the 4th best road power play at 27.1%. The Leafs also have a solid road penalty kill which is 13th at 80.4%. Goaltender Jack Campbell has done an outstanding job in covering up some defensive deficiencies for the Leafs, evidenced by his .931 save percentage and his  2.13 GAA. On the road, Campbell's numbers are not as good as they dip to a 2.69 GAA with a .922 save percentage. Jack has also struggled lately, having given up a total of 13 goals in his last three games. The Rangers have been an exceptional home team this season evidenced by their 10-3-2 home record. At the Garden, the Rangers are averaging 2.87 goals per game. Defensively at home, the Rangers are giving up only 2.27 goals per game which is second least in the league.

Their penalty kill at home is a solid 84.4% which is ninth-best, this can counteract Toronto's aforementioned power play. New York also has an excellent home power play as their 27.9% is good for sixth in the NHL. Goaltender Igor Shesterkin has been outstanding this year as he sports a 1.99 GAA and a .939 save percentage. At home, those numbers are even better as he has a 1.73 GAA with a ridiculous .948 save percentage. I like the way New York matches up in this game and will gladly take the home dog at a very nice price.

Toronto Maple Leafs vs New York Rangers Line Movement

Toronto Maple Leafs vs New York Rangers Pick

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Born and raised in Philadelphia, Tone has been handicapping the four major sports for over twenty years. An NHL enthusiast, Tone’s expertise lies on the ice. He’s excelled and profited finding the right angles on NHL games, particularly with player props, game props, and game totals. A contributor to several gaming sites, you can follow him on Twitter @TonesTakes.

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