Monday, October 30, 2006

Tonight's Games (Oct 30)

Chicago at Philadelphia 7:00 PM
Atlanta at Toronto 7:30 PM
Anaheim at St. Louis 8:00 PM
Washington at Calgary 9:00 PM
NY Rangers at Los Angeles 10:30 PM

Game of the Night

Atlanta at Toronto

This one could be a high-scoring affair. The Thrashers come in having lost just once in regulation time in 12 games but Toronto is a team that they traditionally have had trouble with. Over their past seven meetings the Leafs have outscored Atlanta 33-7 although it's worth noting that the Thrashers were without Lehtonen for most of last year.

Bryan McCabe should probably write a cheque to the Thrashers to compensate them for all the extra money he earned last season, due to their poor play. McCabe had 15% of his points in the four meetings against Atlanta last year. So far he has not played like a $5.75 million dollar player although Saturday's game in Montreal was one of his best of the season.

Atlanta has scored 43 goals in 12 games (3.58 per) thus far, while allowing just 29 (2.42 per). The Leafs have scored 38 and have given up 43. I've already documented Raycroft's recent struggles but it will be interesting to see whether he gets the start and if so, how well (or poorly) he plays. There are much better goalies in the league right now that are forced to split time in net and at some point Raycroft is going to start losing starts to JS Aubin.

The Leafs are trying to finish the month on a good note after an inconsistent first few weeks of the season. Atlanta can tie Buffalo for first in the conference with a win tonight. The East is extremely tight thus far with Buffalo and Atlanta leading the pack, and another 11 teams between 10 and 13 points. That said the Leafs need to get back on track soon or they'll find themselves in 12th/13th. Toronto is at home and coming off a big shootout win on Saturday. They seem to have the Thrashers' number, so until the Thrashers can prove otherwise, I'll take the Leafs.

1 comment:

potvin said...

Good prediction. Interesting article. You may want to do a piece on Jeff O'Neill some time soon and how you feel his comeback is going.