Maple leafs at Avalanche Spread, Moneyline, Trends & Matchups Print
Written by mark   
Wednesday, 28 January 2009 19:31
NHL Headline News

Changes Coming Soon

Denver,Co - Toronto Maple Leafs coach Ron Wilson's frustration with his team's poor defensive play is boiling over. He expects to see some improvement or he'll make personnel changes to get the desired results.

Bet NHL Hockey

Wilson looks for a better defensive effort from the Maple Leafs, who have lost four in a row going into their first meeting in more than two years with the Colorado Avalanche on Thursday.

Oddsmakers from Online Sportsbook Sportsbook.com have made the Avalanche -160 money line favorites for Wednesday’s game against the Maple Leafs. Current NHL Public Betting Information shows that 54% of more than 123 bets for this game have been placed on the Avalanche -160.

The Maple Leafs (17-23-8) have given up a league-high 174 goals, and Wilson's first move to try and improve the team's defense was to call up goaltender Justin Pogge from Toronto's AHL club.

Pogge, 22, was scheduled to return to the minors after starting the Leafs' game Tuesday night regardless of how he performed. The rookie, however, had little chance to make a case to stay in the NHL due to the sloppy play in front of him in a 6-1 loss to Minnesota.

Pogge, considered the team's top prospect, made 15 saves and had virtually no chance on all four Wild goals in the second period.

The lopsided loss was just the latest poor defensive performance for Toronto this season, and Wilson is reaching the point of exasperation.

"We have a lot of guys that have to show a lot more pride in their performance defensively than they're showing," he said.

"Right now it's a garden full of weeds and I need to pick some weeds. It's as simple as that.''

The Maple Leafs have been outscored 16-7 during their four-game losing streak, and have lost eight of nine.

With Pogge returning to the AHL, struggling veteran Vesa Toskala is expected to be back in net Thursday. Toskala has lost his last three starts and is 2-8-2 with a 3.73 goals-against average since Dec. 23.

Toskala has not faced the Avalanche since 2006 when he was with the Sharks. He's 3-3-0 with one tie and a 2.56 GAA in nine games against them.

Colorado and Toronto haven't met since the Avalanche's 4-1 win Oct. 18, 2006, behind two goals from John-Michael Liles. The Avs have won their last three home games against the Maple Leafs since a 3-2 loss March 29, 1997.

The Avalanche (23-24-1) are halfway through an eight-game homestand that hasn't gone well. They've lost three of their first four in the stretch.

After scoring 11 goals in its previous two games, Colorado lost to San Jose 3-0 on Tuesday. The Avalanche have dropped five of six since a three-game winning streak.

Despite its recent struggles, Colorado is only four points out of a playoff spot.

"It's frustrating. We need all the points we can get right now," Colorado's Brett Clark said. "Little mistakes here and there. If we can eliminate those, we're going to be OK."

The Avs have also suffered from a shaky situation in goal of late.

Andrew Raycroft, who stopped 35 shots Tuesday, has posted a 3.12 GAA in losing his last four games, while Peter Budaj is 1-4-0 with a 3.89 GAA in six starts since Dec. 31.

Raycroft, who was in goal for Toronto in its last meeting with Colorado, is 3-5-1 with a 2.73 GAA in nine starts versus his former team.

Budaj made 27 saves in the win over Toronto in October 2006, his only career start against the Leafs.

Bet NHL Hockey

Did you like this article? Subscribe to our Hockey news feed for the fastest updates delivered right to you - Click here to Subscribe

Posted: 1/29/09 12:30AM ET

 

NHL Team Pages

Top NHL Public Bets

View All: NFL |  NBA |  NCAAF |  NCAAB |  MLB |  NHL

NHL Futures

NHL TEAM CUP FINALS ODDS CURRENT
CHICAGO BLACKHAWKS 13/2
LOS ANGELES KINGS 9/1
BOSTON BRUINS 10/1
PITTSBURGH PENGUINS 12/1
ST LOUIS BLUES 12/1
ANAHEIM DUCKS 12/1
SAN JOSE SHARKS 14/1
MINNESOTA WILD 16/1
NEW YORK RANGERS 16/1
TAMPA BAY LIGHTNING 16/1
View All

Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Contact Us | Advertising | 888-99-SPREAD

THIS IS NOT A GAMBLING SITE – If you think you have a gambling problem click here.

Disclaimer: This site is for informational and entertainment purposes only. Individual users are responsible for the laws regarding accessing gambling information from their jurisdictions. Many countries around the world prohibit gambling, please check the laws in your location. Any use of this information that may violate any federal, state, local or international law is strictly prohibited.

Copyright: The information contained on TheSpread.com website is protected by international copyright and may not be reproduced, or redistributed in any way without expressed written consent.

About: TheSpread.com is the largest sports betting news site in the United States. We provide point spread news, odds, statistics and information to over 199 countries around the world each year. Our coverage includes all North American College and Professional Sports as well as entertainment, political and proposition wagering news.

©1999-2013 TheSpread.com