Toronto Maple Leafs (26-17-5) at Philadelphia Flyers (23-22-3)
|Date & Time||Wednesday October 2, 2013, 7:30 PM (EDT)|
The Line: Philadelphia Flyers / Toronto Maple Leafs --- Over/Under:
The Maple Leafs play their second game in as many nights as they continue their road trip in Philadelphia to take on the Flyers.
If the Maple Leafs wanted to forget how last season ended than what better way to kick off 2013-14 than with back to back contests against two of the league’s premiere franchises as they left Montreal on Tuesday night and will be in Philadelphia on Wednesday. Toronto has big expectations this season as last year’s playoff berth was a tease for a fan base hungry for a Stanley Cup title and many people think this is the season that Toronto will have their best chance since the early part of the millennium. Toronto is balanced all over the ice and we should see the first action from Jonathan Bernier in this contest as he attemptes to win the starter’s job from James Reimer. The Leafs will be playing their second game in as many nights and coming off a hard fought effort against the Montreal Canadiens would normally set up a tough end to a back to back but I think Toronto will come out firing here against a Flyers team playing in their season opener.
Philadelphia is coming into this season having missed the playoffs last year and were riddled with disappointment but things appear to be back on track for the Flyers who play their home and season opener here against Toronto. The ongoing goaltending saga in Philadelphia finally came to another tumultuous end as the team has parted with Ilya Bryzgalov and will look to former Blue Jackets netminder Steve Mason to handle the goaltending duties along with free agent acquisition Ray Emery. The Flyers did see Danny Briere walk to Montreal but they do have a great nucleus of talent that if they can come together should be back in the postseason in a tough Eastern Conference this year. Claude Giroux is one of the bright, young stars in the game and the likes of Jakub Voracek, Brayden Schenn, and Wayne Simmonds should provide some secondary scoring help. However, the bugs will be buzzing for the Flyers in their season opener while the Leafs have already played a game and while things could change based on the result of the Canadiens-Leafs game on Tuesday I think Toronto will show up and for a team who I think is the better of the two getting odds that is where I’d play this one.