The Colorado Avalanche are underdogs in tonight's NHL odds as they travel to Anaheim to have the Ducks. Colorado have won 3 straight games and 7 out of their last 10 games. Will they pull off the upset tonight?
Face-off is set for 10:30 p.m. ET at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California.
Too Much Respect!
Just as I though that the Bruins got too much respect against the Buffalo Sabres and the Sabres won at +400 NHL odds, I think the same here. The Ducks are a -210 betting favorite and the total for the game is 5.5 goals. I'm not saying that Anaheim isn't the better team, but these odds are extreme. After all, both of these teams have each won 7 out of their last 10 games and Colorado is the desperate team with something to play for. Is this another game, in which the odds force me to fade the betting favorite?
Varlamov vs. Gibson
It's unconfirmed, but this is the matchup that I expect in goal. While Semyon Varlamov hasn't been a world beater at 25-17-7 with a 2.50 GAA. He hasn't been awful sporting a.922 SV%. The edge that Varlamov has over Gibson is that he's played more this season. John Gibson is 12-6 with a 2.48 GAA this season. This is far from a one-sided matchup in net and doesn't have me off of Colorado yet.
Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry
Anaheim relies heavily on the 1-2 combination of Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry and when healthy, both of these player can take over a game. Getzlaf has 3 goals and 1 assist in his last 4 games and leads the Ducks as 65 points. He's also played well against Colorado, with 2 assists in 1 game. Perry can be a major force in any game, but his season has been shortened due to injuries.
In 57 games, he has 28 goals and 19 assists. While he hasn't been scoring much lately, Perry had a goal in his only meeting against Colorado and is a threat in any game that he takes to the ice. Both players excel on the power play and aren't afraid to get physical; no Lady Bing Trophy for them.....
A Hall of Fame Career...
Colorado is coming off of a 5-2 victory over the Arizona Coyotes and although the Coyotes are a bottom-feeder, it was still a good win as Ryan O'Reilly had a goal and an assist and Jerome Iginla also had a goal to seal the victory.
Although Iginla's best days are well behind him, he's played well as of late. In his last 7 games, he has 4 goals and 3 assists. This is a player that has scored 1216 points in his illustrious career and is still putting up 50 point seasons. I would take that on my team anytime and he could be the difference in a very important game at the Pond.
That said, when a 37 year old player past his prime, leads the team in points and goals, that's reason for concern. Winger, Gabriel Landeskog, has also been a major source of offense for the Avalanche. He's the 2nd leading scorer on the team and has been hot as of late with 9 points in his last 7 games. In the win over Arizona, he had a goal and an assist. He could and needs to play a role in this game if the Avalanche are to remain in the playoff race.
I'm not sold on Gibson and I'm going to fade the Ducks at the Pond, because placing NHL picks at this price is simply ridiculous.
NHL Pick- Colorado +185 at 5 Dimes