Philadelphia Flyers (31-26-8) at Toronto Maple Leafs (29-22-14)
|Date & Time||Thursday March 9, 2017, 7:30 PM (EST)|
The Line: Toronto Maple Leafs / Philadelphia Flyers --- Over/Under:
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The Toronto Maple Leafs look to stop the bleeding as they host the Philadelphia Flyers at the ACC on Thursday in a game with huge playoff implications.
The Flyers have been red hot and are coming off a thrashing of the Buffalo Sabres on Tuesday night and they will be out for more against the Leafs on Thursday who are quickly playing their way out of the Atlantic division and wild card picture. Philadelphia started the season strong and have been trading points ever since but right now they are back on the upswing and look like a group destined to get back to the playoffs and perhaps create a stir in the process with a favourable matchup. The Flyers have won their last four games against Atlantic division opponents but they are a disappointing 1-5 in their last six games following a win which perfectly sums up their season as they have been too inconsistent to emerge as a league power house and is why they are fighting tooth and nail to stay relevant in the wild card hunt. Philly is expected to send Michal Neuvirth to the crease as he will face off against Frederik Andersen who has had some troubles with consistency himself but does look like a viable option moving forward for a very young Leafs side.
Toronto meanwhile has exceeded expectations in the early stages of their rebuild as they have received some stellar play from their youngest players as both Mitch Marner and Auston Matthews have had brilliant rookie campaigns. However, a late season swoon has them in trouble as they don’t have a ton of experience playing in big games and their offense has gone dry at a very inopportune time as they need to sharpen up if they’re going to stay in the playoff picture. The Buds have been decent at home and do face a Flyers team who has been much better home than on the road this season so they are in a good spot to keep this one competitive and perhaps pull off the victory.
The Flyers are 4-14 in their last 18 road games and 8-3 in their last 11 Thursday games while the Leafs are 1-5 in their last six overall and winless in their last six Thursday games. Philly is coming off a huge win against Buffalo and they carry it over here as the Leafs are in trouble and sinking quickly.