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Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Detroit Red Wings - 12/23/18 NHL Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Game
Detroit Red Wings (15-17-5) at Toronto Maple Leafs (24-10-2)
Date & Time Sunday December 23, 2018, 7:30 PM (EST)
The Line
The Line: Toronto Maple Leafs -315 / Detroit Red Wings +260 --- Over/Under: 6.5
TV Channel
FS-Detroit, TVA
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NHL | Detroit Red Wings (15-17-5) at Toronto Maple Leafs (24-10-2)
John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

The Detroit Red Wings and the Toronto Maple Leafs meet in NHL action from the Scotiabank Arena on Sunday night.

The Detroit Red Wings will look to bounce back after a 2-1 defeat at the hands of the Florida Panthers in their last outing. Florida opened up a 2-0 lead by the end of the first period which would turn out to be an insurmountable deficit for Detroit. Thomas Vanek would cut the deficit in half at the midway point of the 2nd frame, but none of Detroit’s shots in the 2nd and none of their 16 shots on target in the 3rd period would find the back of the net for the Red Wings in the losing effort. Jimmy Howard took the loss, falling to 10-8-4 this season after allowing both goals on 23 shots in defeat.

The Toronto Maple Leafs will look to extend their current 3-game winning streak after a 5-3 win over the New York Rangers in their last outing. Patrick Marleau opened the scoring for the Leafs less than 3 minutes into the opening period, giving Toronto a 1-0 lead after the firs tperiod and it almost lasted through the 2nd period as well but the Rangers would equalize with 5 minutes to go in the 2nd, giving us a 1-1 tie after 40 minutes of play. Andreas Johnsson and Morgan Rielly opened a 3-1 lead for Toronto before the Rangers and Leafs traded goals until the end, with Mitch Marner burying Toronto’s game winner and insurance goals at the 12:53 and 19:40 mark of the final period. Frederik Andersen got the win after stopping 25 of 28 shots faced to improve to 20-9-1 this season.

Detroit is 1-6 in their last 7 games overall and 8-22 in their last 30 road games while the under is 4-1-2 in their last 7 Sunday games. Toronto is 16-7 in their last 23 games overall and 38-16 in their last 54 home games while the over is 18-6-3 in their last 27 division games. Detroit is 2-8 in the last 10 meetings between these two teams and 1-4 in the last 5 meetings between these two teams in Toronto.

As much as I want to take the Leafs here, the money line price does nothing for me, and the puck line doesn’t even hold any value as the Leafs lost to Detroit 5-4 when these two teams met just a couple of weeks ago with these same two netminders between the pipes. That’s why I’m going to side with the over here. In a battle of the backups, Detroit’s Jonathan Bernier still gave up 4 goals against his former team, and Toronto’s Garret Sparks gave up 5 goals and hasn’t started since that game and hasn’t seen game action in over two weeks if he gets the start in this one, so I’m expecting some rust. The over has also been a common occurrence between these two, hitting in 5 of the last 7 meetings and 4 of the last 5 meetings in Toronto.

Pick:
Over 6.5

Chris has been a sports fan from when he was old enough to pick up a basketball and was a standout offensive lineman throughout high school and college. Chris uses that same instinct, determination and drive to analyze trends and statistics to find and produce winners on a consistent basis. Chris has been writing for Sports Chat Place since 2016 and covers a wide array of sports from college and pro football, college basketball, hockey and baseball.

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