Columbus Blue Jackets(29-23-4) vs Toronto Maple Leafs(34-19-5)
I understand the Blue Jackets have been playing a tad better over their most recent games and are coming off a big road win vs the Islanders, but the Maple Leafs have seen their own success over the last month. When Mitch Marner and William Nylander are performing at the rate of 12 goals and 13 assists combined over the last 11 games, while the Leafs are 9-2 in their last 11 games, it is nearly impossible to go against Toronto right now. Not to mention that Auston Matthews is still on this Toronto team paired with a goaltender in the name of Frederick Anderson who is 28-15-0 in 48 starts with 2.65 goals against and .921 save percentage, posting his best season to date. The Leafs are securely in a playoff spot so no pressure on them, besides the fact to keep this momentum rolling into April. While the Blue Jackets who have been very inconsistent over the last ten are now fighting their way back into a playoff spot after dropping out of one. The Blue Jackets are coming off two big wins, but a back to back, going from Brooklyn to Toronto, it will be tough to get on top of this Toronto team early. Sticking with the hot hand, Toronto.
Montreal Canadiens(22-26-7) vs Colorado Avalanche(30-21-4)
I haven’t heard much from Colorado since big J Fox is in the process of being a real man, ready to secure some employment here. But the Avalanche are currently still in the playoff race but have dropped out by four points and the loss of MacKinnon has hurt them as of late, good news though MacKinnon did start skating already so he should be back soon(maybe tonight?). Anyways the Av’s are 4-5-1 in their last ten coming off a win vs Buffalo Sunday night, a solid home team that should have no problem with Montreal. Although Montreal was the team that snapped their win streak not too long ago, the Av’s should be able to handle the basement disappointing Montreal team with no problem. The Canadiens are 4-5-1 in their last ten as well coming off an overtime loss to Nashville, Montreal is a pretty competitive team that likes to mix it up, but extremely inconsistent and have no real identity. I’m sticking with again the home team here Colorado.
Florida Panthers(24-23-6) vs Vancouver Canucks(22-28-6)
The Panthers face yet another Western Conference opponent and another Canadian team, they handled the Oilers 7-5 Monday night, off the stick of Vincent Trochecks hattrick, and now the Panthers get ready for the streaky Canucks. The Canucks are 4-6-0 in their last ten coming off a massive 6-0 win over the Dallas Stars(huh?), yeah you read that right. The Canucks return home where they are 10-14-3, well out of a playoff spot, just looking to stay afloat in the league’s relevancy. The Panthers a .500 hockey club right now, performing a tad better lately and probably on par where they should have been all season but the Panthers are 6-4-0 in their last ten with an 11-14-3 road record. Both teams have faced their fair share of struggles, but both of them have relatively healthy lineups at the moment. The Panthers dropping seven on the Oilers is a major confidence booster, but Canucks dropping six and shutting out one of the top goal-scoring teams, may be deemed as a fluke. Tonight I think I am going to go road team here, go Panthers.