This marks my second free NHL pick of the day today, and in case you missed the first, here’s a brief recap of another winner I hit last night at +103 odds.
The Ottawa Senators, coming off two consecutive wins and three wins in their last four, were taking in the Hurricanes who had lost four in a row entering the contest. However, I felt strongly that the Hurricanes had a big effort in them given their work at home from multiple angles this season while the Senators have been bad on the road and were also due for some regression in net from Anders Nilsson.
It turns out the game wasn’t even close as the Canes built a 5-0 lead late into the second and would go on to win 8-2, giving us an easy victory at attractive odds.
Season Record: 18-9
Now, let’s take a look at my second pick of the night featuring the Red Wings vs. Ducks from the Honda Center in Anaheim.
Red Wings vs. Ducks Betting Odds
- Red Wings (+145)
- Ducks (-165)
- Over 6 (+100)
- Under 6 (-120)
Red Wings vs. Ducks NHL Pick Breakdown
Let’s break down both of these clubs and see what the final pick has in store!
Don’t look now but the Red Wings are coming in hot after a pair of home underdogs wins over the weekend – a 4-2 win over the Bruins on Friday followed by a 3-2 win over the Golden Knights on Sunday. Prior to the mini win streak, the Red Wings had just one win over their previous 13 contests.
After a three-game stretch where the Red Wings scored a combined two goals, the offense has found its stroke with seven goals over the last two games. The power play has been a factor in going 3 for 8 (37.5%) in that time while the addition of Robby Fabbri has paid immediate dividends with his two-goal game from Friday leading the way against the Bruins.
Still, this team ranks deas last in the NHL while averaging 2.21 goals per game on the season and 29th in the league with an even two goals per game at home. In terms of overall regression, I don’t expect too much of it considering the Red Wings are quite likely to be a bottom-feeding offense this season and the worst offense from last season was the Ducks with 2.39 goals per game. The Ducks also ranked last with 2.17 goals per game on the road, so if the Red Wings are indeed doomed for last in league offense, it wouldn’t appear that we should expect too much positive regression here.
Defense has been just as big of an issue this season as the offense has been. The Wings rank 30th with 3.79 goals against per game this season and their road defense also ranks 30th with 4.22 goals against per game.
Goaltending has indeed been an issue as the Red Wins have received just an .880 Sv% from Jimmy Howard and Jonathan Bernier this season – good for 30th in the league. Their road .883 Sv% checks in at 27th.
That said, Bernier has found a hot hand as he earned both wins over the weekend and posted a .915 Sv% in the process. Even more encouraging from a Red Wings defensive standpoint is the team allowed just 47 combined shots in those two games and just 19 against the Golden Knights on Sunday. The Wings have allowed 30 shots or fewer in four straight. If the goaltending can improve – which it should given current numbers vs. career numbers for the Howard/Bernier duo – the recent shot-suppressing Red Wings should see their defensive numbers improve.
The Red Wings have not yet named a starter for this one, but with no back-to-back to worry about I would be surprised if Bernier isn’t given a chance to stay hot tonight.
After a hot start to the season the Ducks have been cooled off of late as they have dropped three in a row and seven of their last 10 entering this one tonight.
One again, goal-scoring is at the forefront of their woes. The Ducks have tallied exactly two goals in each of their last four games and have a win in that time thanks to a 39-save effort from Jonathan Gibson in a 2-1 OT win over the Canucks nearly a couple weeks back.
For the season, the Ducks are tied for 25th with the Sharks at 2.61 goals per game while their home offense improves to three goals per game, but that number still sits tied for 22nd. Their simply isn’t much proven depth at all among the forward ranks as the youth movement has fully kicked in and youngster such as Maxime Comtois, Sam Steel, Troy Terry and Max Jones are not producing on a consistent basis – as largely expected.
The usually solid defense of the Ducks has also crumbled of late. The Ducks have dropped back-to-back home games by a combined 10-4 score to the Wild and Oilers and have allowed at least four goals in four of their last six games. Even so, the Ducks still rank eighth in the NHL with 2.72 goals against per game this season and tied for 12th with 2.60 goals against per game on the road.
Their saving grace has long been John Gibson, but he’s had a tough go of late as well with an .839 Sv% over his last two games. Still, Gibson posted a .920 Sv% in October and began September with that 39-save outing over the Canucks.
For the season, Gibson owns a 2.80 GAA and .915 Sv% across 14 starts, but also owns a 2.50 GAA and .925 Sv% across eight home starts – much better than his 3.24 GAA and .900 Sv% in six road outings.
The Ducks also continue to lose the possession game at home with their 47.76 Corsi For% at 5v5 at the Honda Center ranking 29th, but the good news is the Red Wings’ 47.47% mark on the road is quite similar and good for 20th league wide.
The Red Wings are rolling into this one with confidence after back-to-back upset wins, but we need to keep in mind that this team has not scored consistently this season, as evidenced by the goal per game figures noted above. Fabbri’s addition has helped, but this group is still lacking notable depth and remains a long-term projected for GM Steve Yzerman.
The Ducks also struggle to score consistently, but they’ve managed to defend consistently up until their last couple of games. Gibson has a big part in that, and with no back-to-back in play tonight, I would expect him to get this start. I have a ton of faith in Gibson’s work on home ice this season.
Given all of those, I’m looking at the total here and I’m looking at the under. I like how we can get a push at six at Bovada, and I’m still on board with the odds at -120 between a pair of low-scoring teams and at least one defense that remains consistently good. Bernier having rattled off back-to-back quality starts is the icing on the cake.
Give me the under six from tonight in Anaheim.