The Anaheim Ducks and Colorado Avalanche are scheduled to meet at Ball Arena on Tuesday night in Denver. The Ducks are just looking to keep their heads above water, as they are still sitting on the floor of the West Division with a record of 8-15-6 and 22 points. They trail the San Jose Sharks by three points for dead last in the division.
Instead of blowing this roster up a couple of years ago, the Ducks have slowly tried to make moves here and there and re-tool things. They did get rid of some assets, but stopped at a full rebuild. I think that was an error for the Ducks. It was clear they weren’t going to win anything, so why they weren’t committed to a full rebuild was erroneous.
It’s never too late to fix things, though. Now the Ducks are at a point where there isn’t any denying that they have to sell, sell, and then sell some more at the trade deadline. They put the rebuild behind by a couple years, but fortunately the Ducks still have some talent on the roster that should benefit other teams.
Ryan Getzlaf has to decide whether he wants to play out his entire career as a Duck in Anaheim, or approach the team to void his no-trade clause and go to a contender. Getzlaf is a 35-year-old with a little something left in the tank to contribute.
He isn’t the player he once was, but could serve a purpose on a contender. If Getzlaf doesn’t want to be traded, the Ducks will likely honour that, though. After all, Getzlaf has a no-trade clause so he would have to waive it for a deal to happen.
The Avalanche are sitting pretty with a record of 16-8-2 and 34 points. They trail the Vegas Golden Knights by five points, so are within reach of the top. The Avalanche are coming off a 4-1 win over the Los Angeles Kings on Sunday. They’re on a three-game winning streak after losing three straight.
The Avalanche had trouble with the Ducks at home on March 5 and March 6, with a 3-2 win in overtime, and loss the next day by a score of 5-4 in another overtime contest. Nathan MacKinnon was absent in both games, so that was a big loss for the Avalanche. MacKinnon has since returned, and the Avs have looked much better. Head below for our free Ducks vs. Avalanche pick on March 16, 2021.
Anaheim Ducks vs. Colorado Avalanche NHL Betting Odds:
Ducks vs. Avalanche Prediction:
Despite getting Nathan MacKinnon back in the lineup, the Avalanche are still a banged up team, especially the blue line. No one knows what is going on with Cale Makar, who continues to sit out games for the Avalanche. The 22-year-old has been absent with an upper-body injury. He was able to skate on his own Friday, but no word on his return. Fortunately for the Avs, the current defensive core has been able to generate some chemistry recently.
It took them a minute, but they’re beginning to play much better hockey. Note that the Avalanche have allowed just 2 goals in their previous three outings. After allowing 5 goals and losing against the Ducks, it appears that the energy and effort was turned up significantly for the Avs. They are still one of the best defensive teams in the NHL despite playing injured.
The Avalanche have conceded an average of just 2.3 goals per game, and lead the NHL with 25 shots against per game. Philipp Grubauer has been rock solid between the pipes and is in Vezina territory at the moment. Grubauer owns a 1.91 GAA and 0.923 save percentage through 22 starts. He certainly benefits from playing on a team that stresses defence, but is also showing up big in spots. It’s been a total team effort from the defence to goaltending.
Anaheim is 30th in the league with 2.1 goals and 27.7 shots per game. The Avalanche took them way too lightly a couple of weeks ago. They were all out of sorts and struggled to get on track. Even with those wins over the Avalanche, the Ducks have scored only 2.6 goals and conceded 4 goals per game in their previous ten outings.
Conversely, Colorado scored 3.2 goals and allowed 2.2 goals per game in their last ten. The Avalanche likely went back to the tape of those two losses and have a better game plan this evening. Anaheim is only one of two teams to score more than 3 goals in their last ten games. Don’t expect that to happen again. I’m looking at a 4-2 or 5-2 win for the Avalanche, so the puckline is a good bet to go with in this contest.