Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Chicago Blackhawks Free Preview

Two clubs that are facing each other for the final time this season, the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Chicago Blackhawks meet at the United Center in an Original Six matchup. NBC Sports Network will showcase the game, and the puck drops at 8 p.m. ET on Wednesday, January 24.

Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Chicago Blackhawks Odds

Toronto (-105) is entering this one as the underdog to Toronto (-115) and the Over/Under (O/U) has been set at an even 6 goals (-110 for the over, -110 for the under).

Toronto is 26-23 straight up (SU) and has lost 4.5 units for moneyline bettors thus far. 23 of its matches have gone over the total, while 22 have gone under and just four have pushed. This 2017-18 Maple Leafs team is 13-13 SU on the road.

Toronto has converted on 20.3 percent of its power play opportunities this season, a mark that’s right around league average. Its penalty kill is ranked fourth overall, and the teams successfully killed off 83.8 percent of all penalties.

Toronto, as a collective unit, has been penalized just 3.6 times per game overall this season, and 1.8 per game over its past five match ups. The team has had to kill penalties just 6.4 minutes per game over their last 10 outings.

With a .920 save percentage and 31.0 saves per game, Frederik Andersen (23-18-4) has been the top option in goal for Toronto this season. If it chooses to give him a rest, however, the team may turn to Curtis McElhinney (3-4 record, .916 save percentage, 2.78 goals against average).

The visiting Maple Leafs have relied heavily on Auston Matthews and William Nylander this year. Matthews has 36 points via 21 goals and 15 assists, and has recorded two or more points in 11 different games. Nylander has nine goals and 24 assists to his name, and has notched a point in 25 games.

On the other bench, Chicago is 22-25 straight up (SU) and has lost 7.5 units for moneyline bettors this year. 25 of its matches have gone under the total, while 20 have gone over and just two have pushed. It’s 12-12 SU as the home team this year.

Chicago has converted on just 14.9 percent of its power play opportunities this season, a figure that’s ranked 30th in the NHL. On the other hand, its penalty kill is ranked 14th overall, and it’s successfully killed off 82.0 percent of all penalties.

Chicago players have been sent to the penalty box 3.7 times per game in total this season, 3.6 per game over their past five match ups total, and 3.6 per game over their last five at home. The team has been forced to stave off opponent power plays just 8.4 minutes per game over their last 10 outings.

Corey Crawford has denied 27.9 shots per game as the top selection in goal for Chicago. Crawford has 16 wins, 12 losses, and two OT losses to his name and has recorded a .929 save percentage and 2.27 goals against average this year.

Patrick Kane (20 goals, 28 assists) will lead the offensive attack for the Hawks.

Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Chicago Blackhawks Betting Predictions

Predictions: SU Winner – Blackhawks, O/U – Over

Betting Notes

  • The total has gone under in four of Chicago’s last five games.
  • The Blackhawks are 7-4 in games where the team outshoots its opponent by 10 or more. They’ve averaged the leagues most shots on goal (34.6) while the Maple Leafs have attempted the 20th-most (just 34.6).
  • The Blackhawks are 4-7 SU in games where they serve more penalty minutes than their opponent while the Maple Leafs are 14-10 SU when they spend more time in the box than the opposition.
  • Two of Toronto’s last ten games have ended in a shootout. The team is 2-0 in those games and 4-1 overall in shootouts this season.
  • Chicago is ranked 13th in the league with 7.6 takeaways per game. That figure has trended down lately, however, as it has averaged 6.7 takeaways over its last 10 games and 7.0 takeaways over its last five.
  • Toronto is ranked ninth in the league this season with 8.3 takeaways per game. That figure has trended higher recently, as the team has averaged 8.8 takeaways over its last 10 games and 9.2 takeaways over its last five.
  • Toronto might hold the upper hand if it’s a tight one late. The teams an impressive 14-8 in one-goal games, while Chicago is 7-10 in such games.