NHL Picks: Wild vs. Ducks

David Lawrence

Friday, February 1, 2013 1:14 PM GMT

Minnesota became the first team to hand Chicago a loss on Wednesday night and now they’ll try to carry that momentum over when they travel west to face to Anaheim on Friday.

NHL Betting – Wild vs. Ducks NHL Picks

The Wild have yet to win on the road this season and they will face a stiff challenge from the Ducks, who are opening up a three-game home stand. But will Duck backers be on the right side of the NHL odds

The Minnesota Wild can win because…

The Wild have won two in a row after beating the Blackhawks in a 3-2 shootout on Wednesday and they are playing with confidence. Goaltender Niklas Backstrom is securing the team at the back end and he offense is doing enough to get the job done.

Minnesota has high expectations for this season after splurging for Zach Parise and Ryan Suter before the lockout. Parise has come up with nine points in the first seven games to help an offense that has been miserable in recent years. The Wild have always been able to defend but now they’re opening it up a bit. With Parise leading the way, the offense has to keep getting better to keep them on top of the Northwest.

The Wild should have the edge on special teams as the Ducks haven’t scored on the power play in their last 12 attempts. Combine that with their 25th-rank in goals against and the Wild should have a good chance to keep their winning streak going.

The Anaheim Ducks can win because…

The Wild have yet to win on the road this season. On one hand, it looks great that the Wild have started well but keep in mind that much of that success was at home. They’ve only played two road games this season and both games resulted in a loss. The bigger concern might be the fact that they coughed up 10 goals in those two road games. They’ve only allowed nine goals in their five games at home.

The Ducks have played well this season other than the one bad loss to Vancouver. Their offense has looked fairly strong with 17 goals in five games. If the Wild keep giving up goals like they have on the road, the Ducks will be in good shape to get this win.

[gameodds]7/218192/43/us[/gameodds]

Outlook & Pick

Minnesota has won six of their last 10 against the Ducks, they’ve won six of their last 10 in Anaheim. People making their sports picks will be inclined to show them some love. But they’re 0-1-1 on the road in their first two games away from home, although the Ducks are only 1-1-0 on their ice so far in 2013.

The Ducks have had an extra day off and in this compact season, that should give them a small edge. Combine that with the Wild heading west after a couple of games in Minnesota and fatigue could come into play – especially in the third period. Look for the Ducks to take control and begin their home stand with a victory. They’re among our NHL picks for Friday.

NHL Picks: Ducks -125 at Bookmaker

If you haven't yet, be sure to check out our NHL Friday Picks of the Day.