NHL Picks: New York Islanders vs. Toronto Maple Leafs: March 20th 2012
NHL Picks: March 20th 2012
New York Islanders vs. Toronto Maple Leafs
Pick: Toronto -114
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Toronto is coming off a pretty embarrassing lost last night in Boston as it was hammered 8-0. By the end of the second period, the Bruins had seven goals while the Maple Leafs had managed just seven shots. Boston completed a 6-0 season sweep with those six wins coming by a combined score of 36-10. A quick turnaround should do Toronto good here as it heads home in search of its own season sweep. The Maple Leafs have taken the first three meetings with the Islanders this season and look to go 4-0 here.
The Islanders won their last game on Saturday against Montreal with a 3-2 shootout victory which snapped a two-game road losing streak and moved to 14-16-5 on the season away from home. While they have shown some positive signs, the Islanders know a fifth consecutive last-place finish in the Atlantic Division is all but certain. New York has won consecutive games only once since early February and it is now 1-7 in its last eight games following a win.
The loss last night was the worst for the Maple Leafs in four years and while they have struggled at home of late, their last six home games have come against teams in the playoffs or right on the edge of getting in. they had won three straight including two shutouts against the Islanders and Penguins and a convincing 6-3 over Edmonton before things started falling apart. Toronto is still a respectable 16-13-6 on home ice this season with six of their final nine games taking place at home.
Revenge will be in play for New York tonight but that is not necessarily a good thing here as the Islanders are 11-26 this season when playing with revenge including 5-19 revenging a game where the opponent scored four or more goals. There is also a league-wide situation going against the Islanders as we play against road underdogs that are revenging two straight losses where opponent scored three or more goals, off a road win by one goal. This situation is 63-14 (81.8 percent) over the last five seasons. 3* Toronto Maple Leafs -Matt Fargo