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Islanders vs. Ducks NHL Odds, Preview, Prediction: Fade Anaheim’s Gibson in Goal (February 27)

Islanders vs. Ducks NHL Odds, Preview, Prediction: Fade Anaheim’s Gibson in Goal (February 27) article feature image
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Richard A. Whittaker/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: John Gibson.

  • The Islanders play the second of their back-to-back Sunday night in Anaheim.
  • Ducks goalie John Gibson has yet to allow fewer than four goals in a start since the All-Star break.
  • Tony Sartori explains below why he's siding with New York's goalie advantage.

Islanders vs. Ducks Odds

Islanders Odds -110
Ducks Odds -110
Over/Under 5.5 (+100/-120)
Time 8:30 p.m. ET
TV NHL Network
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.

The Metropolitan Division’s sixth-place New York Islanders travel to Anaheim on Sunday night to take on the Pacific Division’s fifth-place Ducks. It will be the first meeting between these two teams this season.

With the opening line set at a pick’em, can the Islanders get the job done on the road?

Islanders Need Win For Playoff Hunt

The New York Islanders enter this contest on the second half of a road back-to-back following Saturday’s matchup against the Los Angeles Kings. Since Semyon Varlamov made that start, we can expect starting goaltender Ilya Sorokin to get the nod between the pipes here.

Sorokin has found a groove again, as over his last four starts he has posted a 0.925 save percentage. While Sorokin had a pretty tough stretch prior to those last four starts, we are now seeing positive regression which we should have expected from someone who ranks ninth among starting goaltenders this season in 5-on-5 goals saved above expected per 60 minutes (GSAx).

New York also has the edge in the analytics department in this matchup as it ranks higher in both 5-on-5 expected goals for per 60 minutes (xGF) and 5-on-5 expected goals against per 60 minutes (xGA). If Barry Trotz and his team want any shot at a wild card spot, they need to start winning immediately.

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Gibson Has Struggled In Goal For Ducks

The Anaheim Ducks continue their stretch of home games following Friday night’s 4-1 loss to the Los Angeles Kings. As the season goes on and the Ducks fall further in the standings, their home-ice advantage continues to dwindle as we saw a crowd that felt like it was 90% Kings fans last game.

Anaheim has been in poor form recently, losing five of its last seven games. The main reason for this slide has been tonight’s projected starting goaltender, John Gibson.

Gibson is going through arguably the worst stretch of his career as he has been in complete meltdown mode in the crease since the All-Star game. The Ducks netminder has allowed four or more goals in every start since the break, going 1-4 with a brutal 0.820 save percentage.

Islanders vs. Ducks Pick

Tonight’s matchup has two goaltenders trending in polar opposite directions. At a pick ’em, I believe we are getting value in the team that is starting the hotter goaltender.

Eventually, Gibson will regress back to his normal play. However, I think tonight is a good spot for the Islanders to continue to try to turn their season around.

Pick: New York Islanders ML (-110) | Play up to (-130)

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