Avalanche vs Ducks NHL Odds, Picks, Predictions
Pictured: Trevor Zegras #11 of the Anaheim Ducks celebrates with teammate Ryan Strome #16. (Photo by Nicole Vasquez/NHLI via Getty Images)
- The struggling Ducks host the Avalanche on Monday night.
- Anaheim has lost six of its past seven, while Colorado has won two in a row and is getting set to make a postseason run.
- Ryan Dadoun digs into this matchup and offers up his best bet below.
Avalanche vs. Ducks Odds
|Time||10 p.m. ET|
|Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.|
The Ducks are stumbling toward the finish line and have lost six of their past seven games. Is there any hope of them beating the defending champion Avalanche on Monday, or is Anaheim simply in line for another night of misery?
One of the few things that will be working for Anaheim is that the Avalanche should be pretty tired going into this contest. This will be Colorado’s third game in four days and the second half of a back-to-back, so the Ducks won’t be facing Colorado at its best.
The Ducks will also likely be spared Avalanche starting goaltender Alexandar Georgiev, who played Sunday. Additionally, backup Pavel Francouz (lower body) is unlikely to be ready to return, so the Ducks are projected to face third-string netminder Jonas Johansson. The 27-year-old goaltender has made one other NHL start this season and allowed four goals on 36 shots in a 5-4 win over Ottawa on March 16.
Colorado will also enter the contest without top-six forward Artturi Lehkonen (finger) and Gabriel Landeskog, who hasn’t played at all in 2022-23 because of a knee injury. But even with those absences, the Avalanche still have star power. Nathan MacKinnon is just seven points away from reaching the 100-point milestone for the first time in his career and Mikko Rantanen is only two goals away from 50 after providing six markers over his past eight appearances. Reigning Norris Trophy-winner Cale Makar will be available too.
Those three won’t necessarily be significantly diminished by the heavy workload either. When playing on no rest this season, MacKinnon has six goals and 18 points in 10 games, Rantanen has four goals and nine points in 10 contests and Makar has a goal and eight points in eight outings. That’s a silver lining for the Avalanche, but playing on no rest is still a burden. Colorado has a 10-7-2 record this season on the second half of back-to-backs, compared to a 32-16-4 mark in all other situations.
The Ducks are going to get a lesser version of Colorado, but the Avalanche still might have enough to beat Anaheim. After all, the Avalanche’s PTS% on no rest is .524, which is leagues better than the Ducks’ overall .384 PTS%.
Anaheim has the second-worst offense (2.55 goals per game) and the worst defense (4.03 goals allowed per contest). It’s not like the squad hasn’t looked much better in recent games either.
The Ducks have Troy Terry, who is fairly hot right now with three goals and eight points over his past seven outings, but that’s about it. Trevor Zegras, who is Anaheim’s scoring leader, hasn’t found the back of the net in his past four games and has been limited to an assist in that span. Cam Fowler is the Ducks’ top offensive defenseman, but he has just one goal and point over his past five outings.
In net, Anaheim will likely start John Gibson, who is 0-4-1 with a 4.85 GAA and an .872 save percentage over his past five appearances.
To put it simply: the Ducks have been a bad team this season, and their struggles have continued recently.
Avalanche vs. Ducks Pick
The odds favor the Avalanche so heavily that even on the puck line, where the spread is 1.5 goals in the Ducks favor, the potential payout for betting on Colorado is mild. Meanwhile, picking Colorado on the moneyline promises a small return.
However, I’m not confident the Avalanche will win by at least two goals. Anaheim’s a really poor team, so it’s certainly doable, but with Colorado set to send out a primarily AHL goaltender in Anaheim, and with the Avalanche playing for the third time in four days, there’s enough there to make me think this game might be close.
For what it’s worth, the other three times this season Colorado found itself in the second half of a back-to-back and playing for the third time in four days, the game was decided by just a goal.
I’m going to take a significant risk and recommend going with the Ducks on the puck line. I’m not saying Anaheim will win, I just believe there’s enough working against the Avalanche for the Ducks to cover the spread. If you want a safer bet, consider taking the Avalanche on the 3-Way. The return isn’t great, but it does beat the moneyline.
Pick: Ducks Puck Line | Play to -115
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