Montreal Canadiens at Toronto Maple Leafs - 1/13/21 NHL Picks and Prediction

Montreal Canadiens at Toronto Maple Leafs - 1/13/21 NHL Picks and Prediction Photo by Handout Photo-USA TODAY Sports

Toronto Maple Leafs (0-0) vs Montreal Canadiens (0-0)

Game Info: Wednesday, January 13, 2021 at 7:00 pm (Scotiabank Arena)

Betting Odds: Toronto Maple Leafs -145 / Montreal Canadiens +120--- Over/Under: 6.5 Click Here for the Latest Odds

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One of the NHL’s oldest rivalries renews pleasantries as the Montreal Canadiens face off against the Toronto Maple Leafs in NHL action from Scotiabank Arena on Wednesday night.

The Montreal Canadiens will look to improve on a fairly successful 2019-20 season that saw the Habs finish 5th in the Atlantic division but 12th in the Eastern Conference. Luckily, and I use that term loosely, luckily for Montreal, there was the Coronavirus Pandemic, forcing the league to adjust its playoff format, opening the door for Montreal to get in as one of the final four seeds. The Habs shook things up early with a series win over Pittsburgh in four games before the Canadiens fell to Philadelphia in the second round. There will be some new faces for Montreal to get acclimated to for the upcoming season, led by the likes of Jake Allen, Tyler Toffoli, Michael Frolik and Corey Perry, all of whom Montreal acquired in one way or another in the offseason. The Canadiens also brought Jake Allen in to back up Carey Price and doing so will help mitigate the loss of Max Domi via trade. But only time will tell if the Canadiens can ride Carey Price and company back into the playoffs this season.

The Toronto Maple Leafs will be out to bounce back from a frustrating campaign once again that saw Toronto fall short in the playoff once again. The Leafs finished with a 36-25-9 overall record, earning the #8 seed and a date with the Columbus Blue Jackets in the opening round. Toronto’s stay in the bubble was short-lived though, as Toronto fell in the opening round of the playoffs to the Columbus Blue Jackets in five games in the qualifying round. Toronto will hope for some more added spark with the likes of Joe Thornton, T.J. Brodie and Wayne Simmonds all joining the fray for the Leafs. Auston Matthews, Mitch Marner and John Tavares are all back as the pillars of the Maple Leafs and will be looking to make noise and get out of the first round this season for the first time since 2004.

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Montreal is 8-17 in their last 25 Wednesday games while the under is 6-1 in their last 7 road games. Toronto is 2-5 in their last 7 Wednesday games while the under is 6-2 in their last 8 games overall. Montreal is 4-0 in the last 4 meetings between these two teams.

Toronto is one of the front-runners in this all-Canadian division, and it’s not hard to see why as they’re one of the more front-loaded teams and they’re sitting in a pretty good spot early on. However, take it from a Leafs fan such as myself, Toronto always struggles in these winnable games early in the season. I remember a couple of years ago, Ottawa was the worst team in the league and the Senators beat us twice during opening week. This team just struggles early on and it’s teams like Montreal that reap the benefits. I’ll take a shot with Montreal and the plus money in this one.  

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Chris’s Pick Montreal +120

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The pick in this article is the opinion of the writer, not a PickDawgz site consensus.

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