NHL Odds, Preview, Prediction: Ducks vs. Coyotes (November 5)
Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images. Pictured: Karel Vejmelka
Ducks vs. Coyotes Odds
|Time||10 p.m. ET|
|Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.|
The Arizona Coyotes will end their six-game road trip after a matchup against the Anaheim Ducks on Friday night.
The Coyotes come into this matchup winless, having lost all 10 of their games to start the season while the Ducks have four total wins on the year and are riding a two-game winning streak.
This is a game that only a gambler could love, and this has a chance to be quite the ugly affair. With that being said, is this the game where Arizona picks up their first win, or will their losing streak continue for another game?
Will the Ducks’ Offense Take Flight?
After entering an early-season slump that saw them lose six straight games, the Ducks have seemed to found their grove again. Anaheim has now won two straight games and is averaging four goals per game in that span. They are also now tied for fourth in total goals in 5-on-5 with 20 and are just outside the top 10 when it comes to goals per game.
However, while those offensive numbers come off as impressive, the Ducks have been a very middle-of-the-road offense to start the season.
Anaheim is ranked 15th overall in Goals For per 60 minutes with 2.32 and finds themselves outside of the top fifteen in xGF/60 and HDCF/60. They have been able to find the back of the net, but this offense isn’t performing as well as some stats may indicate.
Furthermore, the Anaheim defense has been poor so far. Prior to their previous two wins against the Devils and Canadiens, the Ducks gave up an average of 4.67 goals per game and looked vulnerable on that end of the ice. In 5-on-5 situations this season, they are in the bottom ten of the NHL in xGA/60, HDCA/60, and they have surrendered the sixth most goals.
John Gibson is the likely starter in this matchup. He has lost four of his last six starts, and in 5-on-5 he has an SV% of .915, an HDSV% of .895, and -0.6 Goals Saved Above Expected (GSAx).
Is the Coyotes Defense Undervalued?
Arizona has gotten off to a miserable start this season. As a result, there are not many positive things to say about this team.
The offense is as bad as it can get, only scoring an average of 1.3 goals per game. They also find themselves in the bottom five of the league in most categories in 5-on-5 situations, including xGF/60, HDCF/60, and total goals for.
However, Arizona’s defense has not been that bad so far. They do give up 4.1 goals per game, however, the Coyotes are just outside the top 10 in Expected Goals Against per 60 minutes with 2.14, which is one of the few stats that are in their favor and could help them against a mediocre offense in Anaheim.
Karel Vejmelka is the expected starter in net, and just like his team, he has not picked up a win this season. However, he has been great in net, and he isn’t the reason Arizona is losing.
In 5-on-5 situations, Vejmelka has an SV% of .946, a HDSV% of .898, and 2.2 Goals Saved Above Expected. He has only allowed a total of five goals to get past him in his last three starts, but the problem is that he has not gotten any help from his offense.
Vejmelka has been great in net despite not having a win to his name, and he has had to face good offensive teams in Philadelphia, Carolina, Washington, Florida, and Edmonton in five of his last six starts. Facing the Ducks will be a good change of pace for him, and I expect him to continue performing well.
Coyotes vs. Ducks Pick
Nothing has gone well for Arizona this season, but this team is going to get into the win column eventually.
They have had two days of rest and have had to face the top four teams in the league in Goals For per 60 minutes in four of their last five games (Philadelphia, Washington, Florida, and Carolina) while also going up against the Blues, Lightning, and Oilers this season. Their schedule has been a gauntlet so far.
As I mentioned before, Vejmelka has been great in net and for the most part has given his team a chance. It is time for the offense to step up and score some goals, and Anaheim presents the Coyotes with a good matchup for that.
It’s going to be ugly, but I think it is worth taking a swing on Arizona.
Pick: Arizona ML (+150 or better)