Ducks-Wild Betting Preview: Two Struggling Teams Meet in Minnesota
Brace Hemmelgram, USA Today Sports. Pictured: Jared Spurgeon
Betting odds: Anaheim Ducks at Minnesota Wild
- Ducks moneyline: +180
- Wild moneyline: -220
- Over/Under: 5.5
- Puck drop: 8 p.m. ET
Season record: 36-40, +9.72 units
>> All odds as of 2 p.m. ET. Download The Action Network App to get real-time NHL odds and track your bets
This matchup features two teams in very weird spots.
The Ducks just endured a stretch that saw them lose 19 of 21 games, fire their head coach and lose their best player — starting goaltender John Gibson — to injury.
The past month has not been kind to Minnesota, either. The Wild traded away one of their best players (Nino Niederreiter), lost captain Mikko Koivu for the season and have now lost four in a row and eight of nine.
Despite Bruce Boudreau guaranteeing that his team will make the postseason, the Wild could end up being sellers at the deadline as their prospects for making a run in the playoffs are not very good.
Despite their results, Minnesota still boasts relatively strong underlying metrics thanks to their terrific defense. The Wild are still a positive expected goals team, they average 0.41 more xGF than xGA per 60 minutes, but there’s plenty to be worried about with this team — especially on offense.
Without Koivu and Niederreiter, the Wild lack scoring punch and their lack of depth is showing up as a problem. Fortunately, their opponent tonight also has issues with depth as the Ducks have battled injuries all season long and have some of the most uninspiring advanced metrics in the league.
The only good news for the Ducks is that they have won two of three games under interim head coach (and general manager) Bob Murray. The Ducks are still bad, but they should improve at least a little bit now that Randy Carlyle is out of the picture.
Devan Dubnyk is the confirmed starting goaltender for the Wild, but it is not yet known who his counterpart will be. Ryan Miller, who looked terrific behind Gibson before he got hurt, returned to action in a win over the Capitals on Sunday and would be the preferred option over rookie Kevin Boyle, though the rookie netminder pitched a shutout in his first career start last week.
Either way, Dubnyk has not been that great this season and the edge in goal shouldn’t shy you away from betting on the Ducks.
One look at the odds should tell you that Minnesota is the better team is in this game, but that doesn’t mean you should just blindly bet on the Wild. It’s hard to argue that the Wild, as they stand right now, should be -220 favorites over any NHL team, even one as uninspiring as Anaheim.
The bet: Anaheim Ducks +180