Toronto At Washington NHL Game 5 Expert Picks
No-one ever said that navigating the postseason and winning a championship was easy, but there are some teams that have made a habit of making it appear much more difficult than it needs to be. The Washington Capitals have been one of the better team in hockey for several years now, and have in fact won the President’s Trophy for the past two seasons. For all that dominance and undeniable talent, they have always ended up looking very fragile once the playoffs begin. It’s the same old story this season, as they are once again making hard work of a series that they really should be winning quite easily. The Toronto Maple Leafs are an exciting young team that made a big leap forward this season, but they are still a long way from being the complete article. Watch the first 4 games of this series, though, and you would be hard pressed to determine which team was the top seed, and which was the #8. The series is tied at 2-2, and is set to head back to Washington on Friday night for a pivotal Game 5. Find the updated NHL betting predictions here.
A Closer Look At The Maple Leafs At Capitals NHL Game 5 Expert Picks
When: Friday, April 21 at 7 PM EST
Where: Verizon Center, Washington
TV: NBCSN, CBC, TVAS2, CSN-DC
Live Stream: NHL.TV
NHL Odds: Washington Capitals -1½ (+150)
Why bet on the Toronto Maple Leafs
Even in the Maple Leafs come out and lose the next 2 games in this series, they will have already served notice to the NHL that they are back. Another good draft and some offseason deals could see this group become even better next year, which is a rather frightening proposition given where they are at right now. That said, this looks like a team that could well still spring the upset. Every game in this series has been close, and even after going down 2-0 early in Game 4, the Leafs continued to plug away, making the Capitals hold on at the end for a 5-4 win. This series is not over, not by a long way.
Why bet on the Washington Capitals
There is a level of grit and toughness required in the playoffs that isn’t necessary in the postseason, and it once again looks as though those things are in short supply in Washington. Game 4 was a perfect example of that, as it was a game that the Caps should have been able to easily put away after jumping out to an early lead. As soon as the Leafs scored to get back into it, you could almost sense that Washington was all too willing to fold without a fight. This was one of the best defensive teams in the NHL in the regular season, but they have been exposed in a big way in this series, which could serve as a blueprint for future opponents, assuming the Caps get out of this one.
Expert Pick and Final Score Prediction
At 32-7-2, the Capitals were an absolute beast on home ice in the regular season. They only need to win in their own building in the remaining games to move on, which they should be able to do.