NHL Best Bets Tonight: Expert NHL Picks for Bruins vs. Maple Leafs

NHL Best Bets Tonight: Expert NHL Picks for Bruins vs. Maple Leafs

This article is part of our NHL Picks series.

NHL Picks for February 1: Bruins vs. Maple Leafs

The Boston Bruins (38-7-5) travel north of the border against the Toronto Maple Leafs (31-12-8) at Scotiabank Arena in Toronto on Wednesday night, one of just two games on the NHL schedule.

This is the third of four regular-season meetings between these Atlantic Division teams, with the home team winning the previous two battles to date.

Boston picked up a 4-3 win at TD Garden in the most recent matchup on Jan. 14 as the Over connected, while Toronto earned a low-scoring 2-1 win at Scotiabank Arena on Nov. 5.

Ilya Samsonov (17-5-2, 2.31 GAA, .917 SV%, 2 SO) is confirmed to start for the Leafs. He was the winning tendy in the first matchup on Nov. 5, although he left after two periods due to an injury, and subsequently ended up missing the next three and a half weeks.

All-Star Linus Ullmark (25-4-1, 1.90 GAA, .936 SV%, 2 SO) is headed for South Florida next weekend, so it is likely the team rolls with Jeremy Swayman (12-3-4, 2.34 GAA, .914 SV%, 1 SO) to give him a little bit of rest prior to Ullmark's sojourn. He has yet to face the Leafs this season, while Ullmark is 1-1-0 with a 2.53 GAA and .898 SV% in his two appearances against Toronto.

The Bruins were hammered Sunday in Raleigh by the Carolina Hurricanes by a 4-1 score, as Ullmark allowed three goals on 35 shots, with only Taylor Hall breaking through offensively.

For the Leafs, they broke out the 5-1 victory against the Washington Capitals, as Samsonov humbled his former team. The Leafs have won three of the past four outings, and Toronto has picked up at least one point in six of the past seven contests.

The B's are just 1-4 in the past five meetings in Toronto, and Boston has managed just a 1-4 record overall in the past five meetings with the Leafs. As such, backing the Leafs at home is a sound play on the money line.

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NHL Moneyline Bets for Bruins vs. Maple Leafs

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  • Maple Leafs ML (+112 at FanDuel)

The B's have been cashing the Under on a regular basis lately, going 5-1-2 in the past eight games overall, while connecting at a 4-1-1 clip in the past six games on the road.

In addition, Boston has ended up going low in the past four games against winning teams, while going 4-1-2 in the past seven games versus Eastern Conference clubs.

For the Maple Leafs, the Under has cashed in five of the past six games following a victory.

You'll be playing against the series trends, as the Over is 4-1-1 in the past six meetings overall, while going 5-1-1 in the past seven meetings in Toronto. However, that lone Under result overall came in Toronto in the first meeting in early November.

NHL Totals Bets for Bruins vs. Maple Leafs

  • Under 6 (-104 at FanDuel)

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NHL Player Props for Bruins vs. Maple Leafs

Looking at the player props, there are a pair of solid plays in this Atlantic Division showdown.

Boston's David Pastrnak was selected to the All-Star Game next weekend in Sunrise, Fla. via the fan vote, and his recent stretch of hot play likely moved the needle. He is also one of the more colorful characters, which also helps. 

"Pasta" has managed 13 goals and 21 points in the past 13 games, and he has gone without a point just three times during the span. He has six multi-point performances during the 13-game hot stretch, too. At even-money, the All-Star is worth a roll of the dice as an anytime scorer.

Toronto's William Nylander has lit the lamp in each of the past two games, while going for six goals and 12 points during his current seven-game point streak. Of course, there is some risk here, as his most recent scoreless game was in Boston on Jan. 14. He did pick up an apple in the win for the Buds in Toronto in the first meeting in early November.

He is playing with a lot of confidence and will take plenty of shots. He has four or more shots on goal (SOG) in three of the past five games, and nine of the past 13 games, including the most recent meeting in Boston.

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Daniel Dobish
Hockey writer, unskilled fourth liner, fantasy and gambling industry veteran, handicapper, FSWA's 2011 fantasy hockey writer of the year nominee and four-time FSWA award winner. Twitter: @danieledobish
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