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Odds taken from DraftKings Sportsbook.
|Tampa Bay Lightning||+1.5
|Toronto Maple Leafs||-1.5
The Tampa Bay Lightning will try to turn the tables on the Toronto Maple Leafs in Game Two of their First Round series. The Lightning may have a worse regular season record than the Maple Leafs but outplayed them during the regular season. They faced each other four times, won twice, and had one overtime loss.
The Tampa Lightning spent much of the season as a top team but fell off a little as the season went on. They finished the regular season in third place in the Atlantic Division. It would be an understatement to say that the Lightning struggled in Game One. They were crushed and held scoreless. They lost 5-0 and allowed Toronto’s Auston Matthews to score twice and get one assist. The Lightning could not get their offense going and only took 24 shots. Lightning goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy struggled mightily and gave up five goals on 31 shots.
The Lightning have one of the more veteran squads in the NHL. They are led by center Steven Stamkos, defenseman Victor Hedman, and right-winger Nikita Kucherov. Stamkos is one of the most experienced players in the league and still a talented scorer and playmaker. Stamkos’s 42 goals lead the Lightning, and his 64 assists are the second-most on the team. Victor Hedman is almost the same age as Steven Stamkos and has been in the league almost as long. He leads the Tampa Bay defense and is a skilled passer with a team-leading 65 assists. Last but not least, we have Nikita Kucherov. Kucherov is a few years younger than Stamkos and Hedman but still a veteran. He plays almost 20 minutes a game and has 69 points.
Even though Andrei Vasilevskiy struggled in Game one, he is still a top goaltender. During the regular season, he was tied for the most wins at 39, and his 2.49 goals allowed per game were top-ten in the league.
The Toronto Maple Leafs are coming off a dominant game one. Four players scored, and goaltender Jack Campbell came up with 24 saves and did not allow any goals.
Toronto has many talented players, but Auston Matthews and Mitchell Marner stand out the most. Matthews is a natural scorer and leads the league with 60 goals. Marner is also a talented scorer, but he is more likely to set up his teammates; he leads the Maple Leafs with 62 assists.
The Maple Leafs, like the Lightning, have a strong goaltender. Jack Campbell is the starting netminder and can be one of the best in the league; his five shutouts are tied for the fourth-most in the NHL.
This game will not be a blowout like Game One, but the Maple Leafs will win again behind their home crowd.
Toronto Maple Leafs beat 4-2. Toronto Maple Leafs cover.
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|Tampa Bay Lightning||Head-to-Head||Toronto Maple Leafs|
|Jon Cooper||Head Coach||Sheldon Keefe|
|51-23-8 (3rd in Atlantic Division)||Standing||54-21-7 (2nd in Atlantic Division)|
|Leaders (Regular Season)|
|Steven Stamkos (106)||Points||Auston Matthews (106)|
|Steven Stamkos (42)||Goals||Auston Matthews (60)|
|Victor Hedman (65)||Assists||Mitchell Marner (62)|
|Victor Hedman (26)||+/-||Michael Bunting (27)|
|Steven Stamkos (2.98)||Shots (Per Game)||Auston Matthews (4.77)|
The Tampa Bay Lightning are looking to tie up the series but will only come out with a victory if they put many shots on the net and play tough defense.
The Lightning only shot the puck 24 times in Game One. Tampa Bay has to put more shots on net in Game Two. They are facing a Maple Leafs team with a penchant for scoring and can keep the game close by shooting a lot.
The Lightning gave up five goals last game. That will not be acceptable in Game Two. The Lightning defense needs to step up and make life difficult for the Maple Leafs’ wings and centers.
The Toronto Maple Leafs are the favorites but need to draw penalties and use their home crowd to secure the victory.
The Maple Leafs have the best power-play unit in the league. They convert on over 27% of their power-play attempts. The Leafs must draw penalties and give themselves man advantages.
The Maple Leafs will play this game at home before going to Tampa for two games. They have to use their home crowd and the home crowd’s energy to push themselves to a victory and a 2-0 lead before heading on the road.
Defenseman Victor Hedman leads the Lightning in TOI at 25:04. He runs the Lightning defense that did not play well in Game One. The Lightning gave up an embarrassing five goals and struggled to stop Toronto’s wingers and centers.
Hedman needs to take charge of the Lightning and play aggressive defense. He cannot allow Toronto to score five goals again.
Center Auston Matthews is a top player in the NHL and played like it in Game One. He had two goals on six shots. He also added one assist.
Matthews needs to keep on playing like the best player in the league. If he does, Toronto should be in good shape.
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|Tampa Bay Lightning vs Toronto Maple Leafs Information|
|What||Tampa Bay Lightning vs Toronto Maple Leafs|
|Where||Scotiabank Arena, Toronto, Ontario|
|When||Wednesday, May 4, 7:30 PM EST|
|How to Watch||ESPN2|
Max Heering graduated from the University of Kansas Sport Management program in May 2020. Max follows and writes about the NBA, NFL, MLB, NHL, MLS, college football, and college basketball. In his free time, you can catch Max draining threes on the basketball court. Email: [email protected]More info on Max Heering
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