Ducks at Stars Picks and NHL Betting Odds
by Dave Schwab - 2/8/2013
The Western Conference’s Pacific Division will take center stage this Friday night as the only game on the NHL schedule pits the Anaheim Ducks against the Dallas Stars at the American Airlines Center. The puck is set to drop at 8:30 p.m. (ET), and the game will be broadcast nationally on the NHL Network.
The Ducks come into this showdown fresh off a 3-0 shutout of Anaheim as -128 road favorites. It was their fourth straight victory to raise their overall record to 7-1-1, which now has them tied with San Jose for first place in the division. The total has stayed “under” in six of their last seven games.
Dallas posted its second 3-2 win in a row this past Wednesday with an overtime victory over Edmonton as a +101 road underdog. The total ended as a “push” in both games. It is now 5-5-1 on the year overall and 2-1-1 at home.
Ducks at Stars Betting Storylines
One of the main reasons for Anaheim’s fast start is a newfound ability to put the puck in the back of the net, especially on the power play. After finishing last season near the bottom of the league in scoring, the Ducks are currently ranked second with a goals-per-game average of 3.4. They have converted on 26.7 percent of their power play opportunities, which is fifth-best in the NHL.
While Daniel Winnik (five goals, three assists), along with a trio of players with three goals and a combined 30 assists, has paced the offensive attack, the Ducks are ranked 10th in the league in goals allowed. Viktor Fasth has made the most of his opportunity in goal with a ridiculous goals-against-average of .98 to go along with a .962 save percentage in four previous starts.
The Stars have managed to turn things around after posting just two wins in their first seven games with a 3-1 record in their last four. After struggling to buy a goal at times during their slow start, they have found some much-needed firepower from players such as Michael Ryder and a rejuvenated 40-year-old Jaromir Jagr, who leads the team in total points with three goals and five assists.
Dallas has done a good job all season long on defense with a GAA of 2.5. It is ranked 11th against the power play with a kill rate of 83.3 percent and has given up a combined total of six goals in its last three games. Kari Lehtonen has seen the majority of the playing time in goal and is expected to be between the pipes on Friday night. He has a 2.46 GAA and a save percentage of .926 in nine games this year.
Ducks at Stars NHL Betting Odds and Trends
BetOnline has opened this game with both Anaheim and Dallas listed at -105. The “over/under” line has been set at 5.
The Ducks are 4-1 in their last five games playing on one day’s rest and 4-1 in their last five games against a team with a losing record. The total has stayed under in four of their last five games against the division.
The Stars are 1-7 in their last eight games following a win and 5-11 in their last 16 games overall. The total has gone over in four of their last seven home games.
Head-to-head in this matchup, the home team is 4-1 in the last five meetings, and the total has gone over in three of the last five games. This will be the first meeting this season, with Dallas winning six of the previous seven games dating back to the 2010-11 season.
Ducks at Stars Picks and Betting Predictions
The Stars have played well in this series the last few seasons, but the tide has turned squarely in the Ducks’ favor based on the current form of both these teams. Anaheim has it going on both ends of the ice, while you are still not sure which Dallas team is going to show up night to night. Stick with Anaheim to grind out a win in a game that should most likely stay under as well.
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