Lightning-Ducks to Glide 'Under' the Total

Dana Lane

Sunday, November 12, 2017 6:34 PM UTC

Sunday, Nov. 12, 2017 6:34 PM UTC

The Anaheim Ducks try to cool off the red-hot Tampa Bay Lightning offense at the Honda Center; Puck drops at 8:00 ET.

Free NHL Pick: Under 6Best Line Offered: 5Dimes

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Tampa Bay Lightning vs Anaheim Ducks  

From an offensive standpoint the Tampa Lightning have lit up the back of the net plenty in their recent victories over the San Jose Sharks and Los Angeles Kings but it’s their defensive performance that needs to be pointed out. In those games, the Lightning has flexed their muscles offensively but they’ve also only given up just 3 goals in the process. The focus has been on Steven Stamkos and Nikita Kucherov so much that we tend to forget that this is the 5th best defensive team in the NHL allowing just 2.59 goals per game.

The Lightning is off to their best start in the history of the franchise and has won five straight road games. They have dominated on the west coast so far but as teams get deeper into these trips I’ve always felt like it’s their defense that is leaned on more to win games.

According to the SBR odds page, the public doesn’t feel that way as everyone seems to be on the ‘over, so much so that the ‘total’ has been raised from 5.5 to 6, which is probably where it should have started in the 1st place.

From the Ducks standpoint I’m not sure what we can ask of them which plays right into our ‘under’ play. By comparison, the Ducks top two scorers, Rickard Rakell (6-8-14) and Corey Perry (3-7-10), wouldn’t equal the point total of Kucherov or Stamkos by themselves. There is no way I can expect the league’s 18th ranked team to find offensive magic against one of the best defensive teams they’ll face this season. So the question is, will the Lightning push this ‘over’ by themselves with minimal help from the Ducks?

Normally this would be an easy question to answer because Anaheim has always been one of the league’s best defensive teams but this season is another story allowing 2.94 goals per game, ranking them 18th. With that being said I think most teams deem the Lightning visit as a challenge and the Ducks have the ability to play solid defense. There is no doubt in my mind that bettors will get their best defensive effort.

I always take a quick look at a team’s power play to see if I can anticipate any help, especially from the team that I anticipate will have the most trouble scoring. Yes, the Ducks came alive with three power play goals against Vancouver Thursday but I need to see more from the league’s 23rd ranked special teams unit before I can count on their production.

From a trend perspective the ‘under’ is 5-0 in their last 5 meetings in Anaheim and 5-0-1 overall.

Take advantage of the generous line movement .

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