The Anaheim Ducks seek to clinch a win on the road when they take on the Minnesota Wild on Friday, but form and the NHL odds are with the hosts. The Wild are coming off back-to-back wins, and bookmakers install them as the significant home favorites to make it three in a row.
So, will the Wild come through as the bookmakers’ favorite or will the Ducks crack the win column? Find out as we preview this game below and serve up choice NHL picks.
Also, check on these NHL betting lines.
- Game: Anaheim Ducks (19-13-7) at Minnesota Wild (21-10-2)
- Location: Xcel Energy Center, St. Paul
- Day/Time: Friday,8 p.m. ET
- Television: ESPN
Anaheim Ducks at Minnesota Wild
Ducks Eye Road Win
In the broad spectrum of the Pacific Division, the Anaheim Ducks are second in the standings behind a relatively solid 19-13-7 record and 45 points. Recent form, though, is a modest 4-4-2 in their last 10 games, and it includes a 2-2 record in their last four home games, capped off by a 4-1 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins. It was their second 4-1 loss at home after falling to the New York Rangers by the same score.
For the most part, the Ducks’ defense has led the way but it has cooled off somewhat in recent weeks, as evinced in the recent decline highlighted by the loss to the Penguins. The defense is allowing 2.74 goals per game.
Some help from the offense might take the pressure off the defense and goaltender John Gibson, who has been stellar with a.917 save percentage and a 2.64 goals-against average on 866 shots. The offense ranks 16th in the league with 2.92 goals per game.
Wild on Roll
The Minnesota Wild are fourth overall in the Central Division with a 21-10-2 record and 44 points in 33 games played. They’re merely six points behind the Nashville Predators but with five games in hand.
Most recently, the Wild snapped a five-game losing streak with back-to-back wins. They beat the Boston Bruins 3-2 on the road and the Washington Capitals 3-2 in a thrilling shootout at home.
— Minnesota Wild (@mnwild) January 9, 2022
Minnesota’s strength is the offense, which is ranked third overall in the league and scoring at an average clip of 3.58 goals per game. The top line encompassed by Ryan Hartman, Marcus Foligno, and Kirill Kaprizov has combined for 43 goals and 47 assists, but they are also getting secondary and tertiary scoring from the second and third lines.
If there’s a weakness, it’s the defense. The Wild are 19th in the league with 3.03 goals allowed. Goaltender Kaapo Kähkönen has a .915 save percentage and a 2.51 goals-against average on 272 shots, but he could do with more help from the back line, which seems to collapse in front of him all too often.
Ducks to Snap Negative Trend
Not only are the Ducks on the patchy form of late, but they also boast a nine-game losing streak against the Wild (home and away). All streaks end at some point, and this is one that is long overdue.
Across betting online markets, the Wild are favored, and with home-ice advantage and a recent uptick in form, there’s every reason to believe the Wild will come through for their backers. That said, the Ducks aren’t beyond the realm of a potential upset – a bet that is pinned on great odds at BetUS sportsbook.
For those that don’t have the stomach to go against the grain and back the road underdogs, betting the total might be the smart bet. Considering both defenses have had their fair share of issues of late, this game could be packed with plenty of points. Thus, a wager on the over might not go remiss.
The aforementioned choice picks can be bet as single bets or placed in a same-game parlay. The choice is there, although combining bets in such a way does come with more risk involved.