For the second straight year, the Toronto Maple Leafs and Boston Bruins will play a Game 7 in the first round of the playoffs. Boston forced Tuesday’s do-or-die clash with a gritty 4-2 road win in Game 6 on Sunday.
Game 7 will take place at TD Garden in Boston on Tuesday, April 23rd, at 7:00 pm ET.
Opening Odds for Game 7
The Bruins opened around -140 on the moneyline, compared to +125 for the underdog Leafs.
Boston was phenomenal at home in the regular season (29-9-3 home) and dominated the Leafs at home in Game 7 last year (7-4). That said, they have lost two of three at TD Garden so far in the 2019 playoffs.
Game 1: Toronto 4 – 1 Boston
Game 2: Toronto 1 – 4 Boston
Game 3: Boston 2 – 3 Toronto
Game 4: Boston 6 – 4 Toronto
Game 5: Toronto 2 – 1 Boston
Game 6: Boston 4 – 2 Toronto
Maple Leafs vs Bruins Statistical Comparison (Reg. Season)
|46-28-8 (23-12-6 away)||Record||49-24-9 (29-9-3 home)|
|286 (4th)||Goals For||257 (11th)|
|249 (20th)||Goals Against||212 (3rd)|
|50.82 (11th)||Fenwick %||52.89 (5th)|
|90.84 (10th)||Save %||91.23 (7th)|
|54.95 (3rd)||High-Danger Chances %||51.14 (14th)|
On the surface, this series has been a very even back-and-forth battle. However, looking deeper, Toronto can thank Frederik Andersen for the fact that they’re tied 3-3.
Boston has an edge in almost every statistical category. They have outshot the Leafs (216-191), have a better Expected Goals For ratio (52.56% to 47.44%), and have a much better powerplay percentage (43.8% to 21.4%).
However, Andersen has outshone Boston’s Tuukka Rask in net. The Swede has a .926 SV% and 2.16 Goals Saved Above Average (GSAA), while Rask is at .921 SV% and 1.13 GSAA.
On offense, both teams have been led by their best players. The Bruins top line of Brad Marchand, David Pastrnak, and Patrice Bergeron has combined for 19 points in six games and accounted for 8 of Boston’s 18 goals.
After playing just 14:37 minutes in Game 5, Bergeron has averaged over 18 minutes in the last two, quelling concerns that he was suffering from an undisclosed injury. Bergeron has played at least 17 minutes in 102 of his 118 career playoff games.
Auston Matthews leads the Leafs with five goals and six points in the postseason. Mitch Marner (2 G, 4 PTS) is the only other Toronto player with more than one goal, but John Tavares (1 G, 4 PTS) has been solid in a tough matchup against Boston’s first line. That’s allowed Matthews to have a softer matchup against the likes of David Krejci and Charlie Coyle, and the 2017 Calder Trophy-winner has delivered.
Streaks and Betting Trends
Over the past ten games, Toronto is a pedestrian 4-5-1, including the last four games of the regular season. Boston is also a run-of-the-mill 5-5-0 over the same ten-game span.
Betting-wise, the Maple Leafs are a disconcerting 38-50 against the puckline, considerably worse than Boston’s 45-43 record on the year.