The games have started to roll in quickly for the New York Islanders. After weeks of having little hockey to watch the Isles play their second back-to-back tilt in a week. Four games in six nights are what to expect the rest of the way essentially.
And the Isles have done well with the season getting going again. They're currently on a three-game winning streak, they've gone 7-2-1 in their last ten games and are 9-3-4 since December 1. That record since December 1 is the 10th best in the NHL based on points percentage (0.688 pts%).
In their recent three-game run they've beaten the Flyers (twice) and the Coyotes. Neither opponents are at the peak of the league. The Flyers are bottom of the Metro (on points percentage) and the Coyotes are two points above the bottom of the NHL. The Leafs are entirely different opponents.
They're top-ten in the league for points (53) and fifth for points-percentage. The Leafs are a top-tier team in the NHL. The Isles haven't fared well against quality opponents this season, but if they can do so tonight, they'll not only put some much-needed points on the board, but they'll probably convince a few more people that this run they're on is the real deal and maybe even sustainable through the rest of the year.
New York Islanders vs. Toronto Maple Leafs: Lines, Betting Odds
With a solid win against the Coyotes, you don't think Barry Trotz will change the lineup at all. Outside of a goalie change of course, right? His team won 4-0 and did pretty well against the Coyotes. But with Oliver Wahlstrom not playing at all in the third period it's possible that the youngster doesn't play tonight?
Remember Kieffer Bellows sat out against the Coyotes for Austin Czarnik (who was excellent). Who says that Barry doesn't sit Wahlstrom for Bellows? It certainly wouldn't surprise me.
Home team, on a three-game winning streak, you'd think the Isles would be favored, right? At least a little? Nope. At the time of writing, WynnBet has the Isles Moneyline at +150 to the Leafs -170.
There are two factors at play here likely. (1) The Islanders played last night. So the Leafs enter the contest with a bit more rest. And (2) the Leafs are the better team on paper.
Where to Watch
Puck drop is at 7 PM tonight at the UBS Arena. Here's how you can catch the game:
LIVE - Get tickets here
TV - MSG+ 2, MSG Go, ESPN+
Radio - 88.7FM, 103.9FM, and 1050AM