NHL Playoffs Picks: Underdog Predators To Devour Ducks In Low-Scoring Game

Dana Lane

Friday, April 15, 2016 4:00 PM UTC

Friday, Apr. 15, 2016 4:00 PM UTC

With many people predicting that the Ducks will reach the Stanley Cup Final the questions are where are they going to find offense, and weather they are actually worthy of your NHL Pick.

For those that are riding the Anaheim Ducks bandwagon don't worry about saving a spot for me.  The wagon will surely have enough people willing to take my spot after this first round match-up with the Nashville Predators although I don't expect it to be easy. 

The Ducks have lost two of three against Nashville this season but have not played since November perhaps a little too close the Ducks team who started the season 1-7-2.  Since Anaheim went on a tear that allowed them to win their fourth straight Pacific Division title.  

We are going to look at the 'under' 5 option tonight as a possible NHL Pick, and why not considering the generous plus money that's attached to that bet.  Even though I'm on the 'under' here this line gives me an indication that green listed bookmakers like the Predators considering it's more likely that Nashville would be the one to push this game 'over'.  I'm more in the camp of taking a chance with Nashville but perhaps while beating them at their own game the way Los Angeles did recently. 

There are some injury concerns to take into account.  David Perron and Rickard Rakell could see some ice time tonight but I like to see how each reacts to being on the ice before reacting to a name coming back.  Perron has not played since March 20th so expect some rust from both. 

No one would doubt that if you're looking to bet an 'under' the Ducks would be one of the first teams you would look to wager on.  They are third in the league with the least amount of five on five goals allowed while Nashville wouldn't hurt that play with a middle of the pack ranking.  

However, you then have to make sure those numbers stand up when factoring in special teams.  No problem there as the Ducks are third in the least amount of power play goals allowed while Nashville gets a little boost moving up to 12th. 

John Gibson is tonight's confirmed starter for Anaheim. Gibson's .919 save percentage has never been as high as I would like but the way in which the Ducks play defense in front of him makes up it. 

Here's a little advice before laying your money down.  The only starting goaltender that has not been named for tonight's slate of games has been Pekka Rinne.  It may be nothing more than a late confirmation but it does seem a bit peculiar that the total is shaded to the 'over' with both teams being solid defensively.  If by chance Carter Hutton starts don't shy away from the 'under' because Hutton has been extremely sharp in his last four games, showing off a save percentage of just under 93%. The 'over' has cashed in the last eight games of this series but hopefully the public is blindly playing that trend because not even the games this season matter. 

If you think that the last meeting should be the basis for this one just keep in mind that the Predators were a -175 favorite on the NHL Odds in that one.  

Let's be smart and play both dogs on the side and total with some plus money if we split:

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NHL Pick:  Predators +144 & Under 5 +105
Best Line Offered:  at Heritage


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