Both the Toronto Maple Leafs and Edmonton Oilers head into Monday’s meeting with plenty of momentum; they’ve each won four of their last five games and while this type of performance might be expected from Toronto, bettors are a little surprised to see this from Edmonton. 

The Oilers have been among the worst teams in the NHL this season but they have looked particularly strong over the last week with wins over Detroit, Chicago and San Jose. The Maple Leafs will try to cool them down and bring them back down to Earth. 

Monday, February 7th

NHL Odds: Maple Leafs -160

The Edmonton Oilers can win because… 

They are red-hot right now. 

The Oilers have “shot up” the standings over the last week on the strength of three straight wins. They are now 4-0-1 in their last five games and that’s quite impressive considering they had only three wins in their previous 18 games.

What’s even more impressive than the wins is who they’ve come against and the fashion. The Oilers have topped the San Jose Sharks, Chicago Blackhawks and Detroit Red Wings. Their lone loss in the last five games was a 3-2 shootout loss to the Vancouver Canucks

The Oilers are scoring goals at a healthy as they’ve notched 13 in their last two games. Sam Gagner is on fire as he’s compiled 11 points on the team’s last 11 goals. 

This is a young, talented squad and when they play with confidence, clearly they can match up with anyone. 

Dion PhaneufThe Toronto Maple Leafs can win because…

They are playing well as a team these days. 

The Leafs have won two straight and are also 4-0-1 in their last five games. Their penalty kill continues to be spotless as they haven’t allowed a power play goal in 2012, which has spanned 22 straight opposing man-advantages. They still rank 29th in penalty kill but their turnaround has been quite impressive. They were the first team in the NHL since 1974 to go a full month without allowing a power play goal. 

The goaltender is typically the best penalty killer and for the Leafs, they are getting good play in net from both keepers. The hot hand (or glove, more aptly) these days is James Reimer, who has posted back-to-back shutouts. His latest gem was a 5-0 shutout in Ottawa against the rival Senators. He made a team season-high 49 saves. 

The Leafs are finally healthy, they are getting good goaltending and they are playing with discipline. Throw in some home-ice advantage for Monday and they’ll be in good shape. 

Outlook & NHL betting prediction: 

This is a tricky game to handicap as the Oilers are playing well and are scoring plenty of goals. At the same time, the Leafs are doing well too, but for different reasons. They’ve been the recipients of quality defense and goaltending. 

Another team might take the Oilers lightly as they are among the worst in the NHL but the Leafs, who have been paying good attention to details lately, won’t overlook them. Take the Leafs to win on Monday. 

NHL Picks: Maple Leafs