Red Wings at Ducks Picks and Game 5 NHL Odds
by Alan Matthews - 5/8/2013
I'll be honest with you: I have no idea what to make of the Red Wings-Ducks Western Conference quarterfinal series. Anaheim has fairly well dominated its two wins, taking them by a combined 7-1. Detroit, meanwhile, beat the Ducks 3-2 in overtime in Game 4 on Monday night to tie the series -- it’s the Wings' second OT win of this series. Thus, obviously, it could also have been a Ducks sweep.
I do think it's fair to say that the winner of Wednesday night's Game 5 in Anaheim will win the series. The Ducks are -130 series favorites on BetOnline. Detroit, in the postseason for the 22nd straight season, has won 11 of its past 19 series that were tied at 2-2.
Red Wings at Ducks Betting Story Lines
Jonas Hiller looked like he was going to blank the Red Wings for the second game in a row Monday, stopping a whopping 27 shots through two periods (he stopped 23 all of Game 3 and finished with 46 saves in Game 4). But the Wings finally broke a drought of nearly 100 minutes without a goal when Brendan Smith scored his first goal of the season at 1:18 of the third. Damien Brunner won it 4:50 into the extra period. That was fitting because Brunner was the goat of the Game 3 loss when he was picked clean of the puck in front of the Red Wings net by Ryan Getzlaf, who beat Jimmy Howard for a back-breaking goal. Brunner, a 27-year-old rookie from Switzerland, played the least of any Red Wing in Game 4 at 11:16 of ice time.
Detroit stars Pavel Datsyuk and Henrik Zetterberg really stepped up in Game 4 as well. Datsyuk scored a goal -- the tying one at 13:27 of the third -- and was credited with four hits and three shots and a plus-1 rating in more than 25 minutes. Zetterberg had a team-high eight shots on goal. It's not a coincidence the Wings have won both games in which Datsyuk has at least a point (two assists in Game 2).
The Wings played Game 4 without forward Justin Abdelkader, and he will also be suspended for Game 5. He delivered an illegal hit to the head of Anaheim defenseman Toni Lydman during Saturday’s Game 3. Abdelkader had 10 goals during the season and also scored in Game 2. Mikael Samuelsson started in Abdelkader's spot on the Red Wings' top line Monday. Samuelsson played in only four regular-season games because of injuries. He had four shots on goal Monday and was plus-1. Detroit lost defenseman Danny DeKeyser to a broken thumb in Game 2.
Lydman wasn't able to go in Game 4 because of an injury suffered on the hit and is very unlikely for Game 5. Lydman had six assists and averaged 19:23 of ice time in 35 regular-season games. Veteran Sheldon Souray replaced Lydman in Game 4 and played more than 24 minutes. Souray was pulled from the lineup for Game 3 after taking two penalties in Game 2, both of which led to Wings power-play goals.
The Ducks aren't going to win when Getzlaf, Corey Perry and Bobby Ryan don't score, and that trio was held off the scoresheet and was minus-2 in Game 4. Getzlaf, who led the team with 49 points this season, had scored in the previous two games but was stoned on a breakaway in Game 4. Perry has been quiet with just a lone assist in the series. Ryan has a goal and two assists but didn't even have a shot on goal Monday.
Red Wings at Ducks NHL Game 5 Betting Odds and Key Trends
At BetOnline, the Ducks are -142 and the Wings +129 with the total at 5. Detroit was 8-14-2 “over/under” on the road this season (1-1 in this series). The Ducks were 11-11-2 O/U at home this season.
The Red Wings are 6-1 in their past seven playing on one day of rest. They are 4-1 in their past five when allowing two goals or fewer in their previous game. The Ducks are 8-3 in their past 11 Wednesday games. They have won just two of their past seven playing on one day of rest. Anaheim is 1-4 in its past five after scoring two goals or fewer in their previous game. The under is 7-1-2 in Detroit's past 10 after allowing two goals or fewer in their previous game. The under is 6-1 in the Wings' past seven after a win. The under is 8-3 in the past 11 meetings in Anaheim.
Red Wings at Ducks Picks and Betting Predictions
Hiller was arguably the best player on the ice in Game 4 but got zero help from his defense as the Wings were playing much more aggressively and attacking the net. Hiller wasn't even the best goalie on his own team during the regular season, but it's now pretty evident that Coach Bruce Boudreau is going to leave rookie Viktor Fasth tethered to the bench barring a Hiller injury.
The Wings were clearly the more motivated team in Game 4, but they only won thanks to goals from two very unlikely sources. I highly expect that intensity to shift back to the Ducks at home in Game 5, especially after Boudreau called out some of his players as "passengers" in Monday's game. Plus, the Ducks had scored eight of the past nine goals in this series entering the third period of Game 4. They are the choice, and the under.
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