Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Arizona Coyotes Matchup

Jose VasquezArticles, Hockey, NHL

Gila River Arena plays host to a cross-continent showdown as the Arizona Coyotes welcome the visiting Toronto Maple Leafs. It’s the last time that the two clubs will meet in the regular season. The matchup gets underway at 9 p.m. ET on Thursday, December 28, and fans at home will be able to watch the game live on Fox Sports Arizona.

Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Arizona Coyotes Odds

Arizona (+150) is playing the role of underdog to Toronto (-170), and the oddsmakers have set the Over/Under (O/U) at an even 6 goals. The odds for betting the total sit at -120 for the under and +100 for the over.

Toronto is 22-15 straight up (SU) and has earned moneyline bettors 2.8 units this season. Through 37 regular season matches, 18 of its games have gone over the total, while 16 have gone under and just three have pushed. This 2017-18 Maple Leafs team is 11-10 SU on the road.

Toronto has converted on 22.2 percent of its power play opportunities this year, a mark that’s good enough for eighth-best in the league. Its penalty kill is ranked 10th overall, and the teams successfully killed off 82.5 percent of all penalties.

Toronto, as a collective unit, has been penalized just 3.6 times per game overall this season, and 3.0 per game over its last five on the road. The team has been forced to defend opponent power plays just 6.7 minutes per game over their last 10 outings.

Averaging 31.6 saves per game with a .924 save percentage, Frederik Andersen (19-11-1) has been the top option in goal for Toronto this season. If it chooses to rest him, however, head coach Mike Babcock might turn to Curtis McElhinney (3-4 record, .916 save percentage, 2.78 goals against average).

The visiting Maple Leafs have relied on Auston Matthews and Mitchell Marner heavily this year. Matthews (28 points) is up to 14 goals and 14 assists, and has recorded multiple points in eight different games. Marner has four goals and 22 assists to his creditand has logged a point in 14 games.

Arizona is 9-30 straight up (SU) and has lost 20.1 units for moneyline bettors this year. 21 of its matches have gone under the total, while 16 have gone over and just one has pushed. This season, the teams 4-13 SU as the home team.

Arizona has converted on just 14.6 percent of its power play chances this year, a figure that’s ranked 29th in the NHL. On the other hand, its penalty kill is ranked 15th overall, and it’s successfully killed off 81.0 percent of all penalties.

Arizona players have been penalized only 3.3 times per game in total this season, and 4.8 per game over their last five home outings. The team has had to kill penalties 15.6 minutes per game over their last five home outings.

Antti Raanta (25.2 saves per game) has been the top option in goal for Arizona. Raanta has five wins, 14 losses, and two OT losses and has recorded a mediocre 2.80 goals against average and a .916 save percentage this year.

Clayton Keller (13 goals, 17 assists) will pace the offensive attack for the Coyotes.

Toronto Maple Leafs at Arizona Coyotes Betting Picks

Predictions: SU Winner – Maple Leafs, O/U – Under

Betting Trends

  • Arizona is 1-1 in games decided by a shootout this season while Toronto is 2-1 in shootouts.
  • The under has hit in three of Arizona’s last five outings.
  • Five of Toronto’s last ten games have been decided by two goals or more. The team is 1-4 in those games.
  • The Coyotes this season have registered the sixth-most hits per game (23.7), but the club has averaged 26.6 over their last five home games.