The Vegas Golden Knights are in Toronto at Scotiabank Arena for a Thursday night meeting with the Toronto Maple Leafs. Vegas are in the midst of a four-game road trip. The first game resulting in a win against the Blue Jackets in Columbus. It was a close call, but the Golden Knights were able to edge the home team out with a 2-1 victory.
Marc-Andre Fleury played a sharp game between the pipes, as he sent back 29 of 30 shots sent his way. He finished the evening with a rock solid 0.967 save percentage. At 34 years old, Fleury still has it and has been playing well for the Golden Knights in his third season with the young franchise.
After getting to the Stanley Cup Final as an expansion team and setting the hockey world ablaze, the Golden Knights had a setback with an exit against the Sharks in the playoffs a season ago. The Sharks rallied in Game 7 with the help of a horrendous penalty call on the Knights. We’ll see what year-three has in store for Vegas.
They are off to a 9-5-2 start with 20 points on the season. The Flames and Coyotes are tied with the Knights in the Pacific with 20 points as well. With the Oilers losing last night and everyone else having the night off, they remain 2 points behind for 1st in the division. Everything is wide open and this division should continue to be there for the taking. It’s tough to get a feel for who is real and pretenders at this point.
I’m high on the Canucks, but who knows what the Oilers are going to be in a few months. Even with the Canucks, there are lot of people waiting to see if they’re for real or not. With respects to the Maple Leafs in the Atlantic, you’ll find a lot more people in the camp that this team are a bunch of pretenders.
A first-round exit courtesy of the Boston Bruins is the most widespread prediction, and how can you really dispute that given what’s happened in the past. The Leafs had a big 3rd period against the Kings in their most recent outing. They needed it to overcome a 1-0 deficit. Auston Matthews scored to make it 2-1, and then William Nylander buried the Kings shortly thereafter with the kill shot to make it 3-1 late. In any event, the Leafs shouldn’t be struggling with a team like the Kings at home. Get our free Golden Knights vs. Maple Leafs pick below.
Vegas Golden Knights vs. Toronto Maple Leafs Pick
This is the third trip for the Golden Knights to Toronto to face the Maple Leafs. The first two visits were not successful, with the Golden Knights falling by scores of 4-3 and 3-1. It took a shootout to beat the Maple Leafs back in 2017, but in their next meeting in Toronto, Frederik Andersen came up big with 36 saves to get a 3-1 win.
The Knights are 1-3 against the Leafs, with their lone win coming in Las Vegas New Year’s Eve on the final day of 2017. Toronto have been solid with a record of 8-5-3, though fans of the team are expecting a lot more at this point. They have all of the talent in the world offensively, but the general opinion seems to be that they’re wasting it. There is some truth to what Alexander Ovechkin said about the Leafs.
They have to learn how to play better as a cohesive unit and good things will follow. It took Ovechkin a while to figure that out and he got a Stanley Cup out of the deal. The Leafs have no shortage of guys who can score, but things tend to get lazy in the defensive zone. Toronto have averaged 3.44 goals per game, which has them in the top-10 of the league at 7th.
The Leafs have been even better at home, with an average of 3.6 goals scored per game. That’s considerably better than the 2.71 goals a game that Vegas have netted on the road this season. However, the Leafs have gotten beaten in their own zone for 3.17 goals per game. That must improve for them to get past the first-round this season. Against a Vegas team in the middle of a lengthy road trip, the Leafs should be able to handle their business at home and pick up a win.