The Anaheim Ducks put on a nice performance over the Ottawa Senators at the Duck Pond on Tuesday night. They struck early and went into the first intermission with a huge 4-0 lead. What the Ducks did is make the most of their chances, and take advantage of a bad night for Marcus Hogberg. The goaltending was abysmal from Hogberg, as he allowed 5 goals on 15 shots for a 0.667 save percentage. Anaheim put the game on cruise control after the first stanza.
They added another goal in the second period to go up 5-1 at the break. The final score didn’t reflect the shots on net. Ryan Miller was peppered for 42 shots and let only two of them find a way in the net. If you were to say the shots were 42-15 without looking at the score, it’d be reasonable to assume that the team with 42 shots won. However, goaltending and taking advantage of scoring chances is all part of the deal in the NHL. The Ducks will be back at the Honda Center tonight for what should be a bigger test against the St. Louis Blues.
The Blues hold a slim 2-point advantage on the Avalanche for first in the Central Division. They’re catching a break with the injury bug that is reeking havoc on their locker room. The hits keep coming in Denver and the Blues aren’t going to mind all that much. St. Louis must focus on their own game before looking at the standings, though. They’re coming off a 2-1 loss against the Panthers, as they were beat at their own game in a defensive battle at the Enterprise Center.
They’ve lost two of their last three games, though the Blues were on an eight-game winning streak before losing against the Devils. The Blues are still sitting there strong in the Central with a record of 41-19-10 and 92 points. As they found out last season, playing this well in the regular season doesn’t necessarily equal a Stanley Cup. The Blues were last going into 2020 and finished third in the division. We all watched what happened next.
The Ducks will be looking for their fourth win in the last five games after knocking off the Senators last night. It’s only the Senators, but they recently topped the Avalanche and Maple Leafs as well, which are two nifty wins for the Ducks. They head into Wednesday with a record of 28-32-9, as they attempt to finish the season with some momentum in March and early April. Head below for our free Blues vs. Ducks pick.
St. Louis Blues vs. Anaheim Ducks Betting Odds:
Blues vs. Ducks Prediction:
The Blues thought they were going to be in a bit of trouble when they lost Vladimir Tarasenko early in the year. He’s only played in ten games and may miss the entire regular season. If Tarasenko can return late in the regular season for a game or two to shake off the rust would be ideal, though.
Despite no Tarasenko, a top playmaker for the Blues, they’ve played better in the regular season than last year. In any event, the thought process in St. Louis is that they’re going to be an even stronger team than their 41-19-10 record indicates once he comes back. We’ll see what happens, but the guys they currently have on the ice are talented enough to make a deep run.
David Perron, the former Vegas Golden Knights, continues to prove to be a tremendous acquisition by the Blues. He is on pace to break his previous career-high in points, as he enters tonight with 60 points to lead the team. He’s helped the Blues rack up 3.13 goals per game for 15th in the NHL. That doesn’t sound great compared to some of the other offences out there, but what makes the Blues’ offence good is that they can consistently play that well.
There isn’t much on and off nights for them. They typically score around their average, which is enough to win games with the defence and Jordan Binnington between the pipes. In their previous ten games, the Blues have scored 3 goals a game and allowed 1.9 goals against. The defence has been getting stronger as the season goes along. One of the most important aspects of finding success in the playoffs is continually improving.
The Blues are 5th in the league with 2.69 goals allowed per game. They’ve been rather average on the road, but against what should be a tired Ducks team tonight, the defence should be able to hold the Ducks at bay. What the Ducks did to win last night was take advantage of a terrible goaltender. They’re not going to have that luxury against Binnington, who carries a 2.56 GAA and 0.912 save percentage into Wednesday.
Note that the Blues have liked going to Anaheim to play. They’re 3-0 in their last three trips here, as they won by a combined score of 14-7. The Blues scored 4.6 goals per game in those three outings. After failing to generate a solid push versus the Panthers, expect the Blues to get back on track against the Ducks in Anaheim.