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Eastern Conference Quarterfinal - Game 4
Toronto +100 over Tampa Bay
7:00 PM EST. OT Included. The Lightning had the eighth-best record in the league but were among the Cup favorites and were mostly picked to beat the Leafs. Was this a legacy pick or did the market and media expect they would be in two-time-defending-champ form? The Lightning have definitely earned the benefit of the doubt, but this is the best Leafs’ team in recent memory and it sure looks like they’re ready to take that next step.
There are so many good things happening on the Leafs front. They rebounded from a bad loss in Game 2. They jumped out to a sharp, 3-0 lead in Game 3 and held off a furious rally when Tampa made it 3-2 with plenty of time left in the third. In years past, we all know Toronto would’ve blown that. Another great sign was depth scoring. Toronto’s bottom six really delivered, with the two late goals from Ilya Mikheyev, one from David Kampf, and another from Colin Blackwell. If the Leafs are getting more production from the bottom six, they’re not losing.
We stated before last game that the key to beating the Bolts is to stay out of the box. 5-on-5, Toronto has a big edge over this team and it’s for that reason among others that we must stick with the better team and let the chips fall where they may. Tampa being favored here is predicated on its pedigree and Toronto’s lack of playoff success. It’s not justified and we’re on it.
Toronto +100 (Risking 2 units - To Win: 2.00)