It was not a fruitful night with last night’s pair of NHL picks and I went winless and took one of the more frustrating losses of the season.
I rolled the dice on the Red Wings at +179 as home underdogs and it simply didn’t work out.
The score was actually just 1-0 Flyers entering the third period, but the Red Wings had just 11 shots at that point and mustered only five in the third in a rather lifeless 3-0 loss to what is a poor Flyers road team.
I can live with that type of loss as I knew the risk.
The Maple Leafs losing their contest to the Florida Panthers was a much tougher pill to swallow.
It had the Leafs at -125 to beat the visiting Panthers in regulation, and they dominated their way to a 3-1 lead early in the third after holding the Panthers to just 11 shots themselves through two periods.
However, Frederik Andersen was injured in a first-period collision and did not return for the second. Backup Michael Hutchinson stopped three second-period shots, but went on to allow three goals on 10 third period shots and it cost the Leafs in a 5-3 loss.
The Maple Leafs doubled the Panthers in shots at 5v5 at 28-14, controlled about 70 percent of scoring chance and high-danger scoring chances and yet managed to lose by two goals. Andersen getting hurt crushed us here.
Very tough pill to swallow indeed as the Leafs win that game 9.9 out of 10 times, and we just got extremely unlucky with that outcome.
Nonetheless, we’ll move onto tonight’s 13-game slate in search of redemption.
Season Record: 86-76-1
Now let’s take a look at a free NHL pick featuring the Ducks vs. Senators from the Canadian Tire Centre in Ottawa!
Ducks vs. Senators Betting Odds
- Ducks (-103)
- Senators (-107)
- Ducks +1.5 (-250)
- Senators -1.5 (+210)
- Over 6 (+103)
- Under 6 (-114)
Ducks vs. Senators NHL Pick Breakdown
Now let’s take a look at each of these clubs before getting into my final pick!
It’s game two of a five-game road trip for the Ducks tonight and it was started on a good note in Los Angeles on Saturday with a 3-1 win over the rival Kings.
The Ducks were brutalized in the shot department in that one, however, getting outshot 47-28 against a Kings team that puts a lot of pucks on goal, but gets few results.
It actually marked the fourth win over the last six games for the Ducks as they endure a rebuilding season while sitting second-last in the Western Conference, four points ahead of the Kings.
The Kings are no offensive juggernaut, but it was nice to see the Ducks hold an offense in check on the road, something that’s been a tough task this season, until late.
After allowing the lone goal on Saturday, the Ducks sit 19th with 3.33 goals against per game on the road where their penalty kill ranks 25th with a 75.9% mark.
That penalty kill has been real good of late, however, posting a 92.3% mark (13 for 14) over their last six games.
Their offense hasn’t been there in support, either.
Anaheim averages just 2.30 goals per game on the road, good for 28th league wide, while their road power play also checks in at 28th with a 13.6% mark.
As a result, it’s not terribly difficult to see how the Ducks sit with a 9-16-2 record on the road entering this one tonight.
The possession numbers aren’t much prettier.
At 5v5 on the road, the Ducks sit 22nd with a 47.02% Corsi For%, 21st with a 46.41% Scoring Chances For% and 25th with a 43.92% High-Danger Chances For%.
The Ducks have struggled to win possession for a few years now and have been bailed out by goaltender John Gibson, but Gibson has been unable to do so again this season.
In my opinion, he’s still one of the best goaltenders in the league and has had to carry his team in recent years, but it hasn’t happened this time around.
Gibson enters this one sporting a 3.00 GAA and .904 Sv% on the season to go along with a 15-21-3 record in 39 starts.
His work at home has remained solid, but Gibson has slipped to a 3.36 GAA and .896 Sv% on the road and has gone just 5-13-2 in his 20 outings outside of the Honda Center.
Gibson is also coming off a month of January where he struggled to a 3.36 GAA and .888 Sv% in nine starts and watched Ryan Miller turn aside 46 of those 47 Kings shots on Saturday in Los Angeles.
Gibson owns an .875 Sv% in three games coming out of the All-Star break.
The Senators have been unable to gain any momentum from a couple of recent wins and have won just two of their last 14 games.
It was a better effort in a 2-1 overtime loss in Toronto on Saturday, but they were still outshot 36-25 in that one and allowed both goals on the penalty kill on just three Toronto power plays.
They return home for the first of a mini two-game home stand tonight, and while their 12-9-5 record at home is far superior to their 6-15-5 mark on the road, this team has been getting dominated on home ice of late.
The Sens have allowed an average of 43.5 shots per game over their last four at home and have allowed 42 or more three times in that stretch.
As a result, their possession numbers at home – once comfortably in the top-half of the league – have plummeted.
At 5v5 at home, the Senators rank 27th with a 47.78% Corsi For%, 24th with a 49.10% Scoring Chances For% and 15th with an improved 53.39% High-Danger Chances For%.
Still, those numbers are far worse than they were as recently as Christmas.
There are some positives, however.
The Sens are tied for 17th with 2.96 goals against per game at home this season but their penalty kill also sits 12th with an 83% mark at Canadian Tire Centre this season.
Their offense hasn’t been dynamite at home, but they average a decent 3.12 goals per game at home and while their power play still sits 27th with a 15.5% clip at home, there’s positives there too.
The Sens have actually caught fire on the man advantage of late, going 7 for 17 (41.2%) over their last six games, scoring at least one power play marker in five of those six games.
On the flip side, their penalty kill has been torched for a 70.6% clip over their last four, allowing at least one goal in all four of those games on the penalty kill.
The Senators have not named a starter for this one tonight, so I won’t go into too much speculation here.
If it’s Marcus Hogberg, who I assume will start, he will bring a 3.00 GAA and .910 Sv% into action across 13 appearances, but also a 3.04 GAA and .916 Sv% at home where he’s been berated with rubber of late.
It it’s Craig Anderson, he’ll carry in a 3.19 GAA and .901 Sv% into action and an improved 2.87 GAA and .912 Sv% at home. Anderson has been excellent of late as well, turning in a .939 Sv% over his last two starts.
The Sens have certainly had their struggles of late and have not played nearly as well at home as they did earlier in the season, but I like their chances tonight.
For one, the Ducks simply aren’t a good road team – at all – in winning just nine of 27 games away from home this season.
Secondly, the Senators have played better of late. They took the Maple Leafs to overtime on Saturday, beat Buffalo on the road last week and played a solid game against the NHL-best Capitals on Friday.
The end results haven’t been there, especially of late, but this team has shown fight and resolve all season long under new head coach D.J. Smith.
According to the numbers, both Senators netminders would carry a statistical advantage over John Gibson in this scenario and we can’t forget the Ducks have averaged just those 2.30 goals per game on the road.
I think we’re getting pretty good odds here with the Senators on their home turf, so let’s grab Ottawa on the moneyline tonight.