Panthers vs. Maple Leafs prediction and odds for NHL Playoffs Game 1

Apr 10, 2023; Sunrise, Florida, USA; Toronto Maple Leafs left wing Matthew Knies (23) looks on during the first period against the Florida Panthers at FLA Live Arena. Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 10, 2023; Sunrise, Florida, USA; Toronto Maple Leafs left wing Matthew Knies (23) looks on during the first period against the Florida Panthers at FLA Live Arena. Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports /
facebooktwitterreddit

Not many people would have predicted a Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Florida Panthers second round matchup, but here we are. It will be the first time these two teams will face each other in the NHL postseason.

The Maple Leafs were getting ready to take on the Boston Bruins in the second round, but three straight wins by the Panthers now means the Leafs get home ice advantage in a winnable series with a berth in the Eastern Conference Final on the line.

Let’s dive into the betting odds for tonight’s Game 1 in Toronto and then I’ll give you my best bet.

Panthers vs. Maple Leafs odds, puck line, and total

Panthers vs. Maple Leafs prediction and pick

The Maple Leafs are sizable favorites to win Game 1 and while I do think they win, I think the odds are set at -160 so there’s no betting value on the moneyline.

Instead, I’m going to take a look at the total and bet on the OVER 6.5 at -115 odds.

The Florida Panthers are the dictionary definition of a team that’s all offense and no defense. They led the NHL this season in expected goals per 60 minutes at 3.76, but also ranked 23rd in expected goals against.

Inherently, we should expect high-scoring affairs in their games more often than not.

It’s also important to keep an eye on the Maple Leafs power play. They had the second best powerplay unit in the NHL during the regular season and now they get to take on the Panthers team that had a bottom 10 penalty kill unit.

Powerplays will give the Maple Leafs the best chance possible to score early and often in this series, and it’s going to be a big part in us hitting the OVER tonight.

If you’re a Leafs fan (like myself), let’s root for a 7-0 victory tonight. A 4-3 victory will do just as well both for our Buds and for our OVER.

Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.