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St. Louis Blues at Anaheim Ducks Betting Preview

Monday night in Orange County, the St. Louis Blues and Anaheim Ducks will face off for just the third time this season. The first two matchups came at the end of January and weren’t particularly close, with St. Louis (11-8-2) outscoring Anaheim (6-10-5) by a count of 10-2 in the two-game sweep.

Here’s a look at where each of these teams stands on March 1st, from important stats to key players, before releasing a free pick. St. Louis is the favorite on the road in this one, listed at -145, while Anaheim sits at +125.

By the Numbers

The difference in offensive production between these clubs is significant. The Blues are 11th in goals per game and shots on goal with totals of 3.14 and 30.9, while also boasting a top-10 shooting percentage. Then there’s the Ducks, the league’s lowest-scoring team with an average of 1.95 goals per game, while also ranking 29th with 27 shots per game and next-to-last in shooting percentage. The only area these two are close is on the power play, where St. Louis holds a slight 12.5 to 10.4 percent advantage.

Defensively, Anaheim’s overall numbers rank higher. The Ducks are 14th in the NHL with 2.81 goals allowed per game, while also ranking within the top-10 in shots allowed with 28.9 and top-5 in penalty kill percentage at 86 percent. Unlike past seasons, St. Louis’ defense has appeared to step back a bit, ranking 24th with 3.1 goals allowed. They’re also 14th in shots allowed with 29.7, but just 25th on the penalty kill at 73.3 percent.

Blues Betting Preview

Following a three-game skid, the Blues played arguably their most exciting game of the 2021 season on Saturday. St. Louis traded goals with the Sharks all game long but ended up holding on for a 7-6 victory in San Jose. The Blues won the game despite having fewer shots and nearly double the penalty minutes. Regardless, it snapped their rough stretch of four losses in five games to move them into a tie with the Wild for second place in the West Division.

St. Louis’ leading point-producer this season is the veteran wing, David Perron. Perron has a team-high 21 points, 15 of which are assists, and has dished out a helper in four of his last five games. Trailing him is Ryan O’Reilly, who, after a goal and assist on Saturday, is up to seven goals and 12 assists on the year. The 22-year old Jordan Kyrou has also been huge for the Blues, racking up one fewer helper than O’Reilly this season. Others to watch include Brayden Schenn, who added to his now-10 goal count on Saturday, as well as the late free-agent addition Mike Hoffman, who is up to six goals and nine assists.

Once again, expect the Blues to turn to Jordan Binnington to start between the pipes. The third-year netminder is 8-6-2 this year with a 2.66 GAA, and .909 save percentage.

Ducks Betting Preview

The Ducks are stuck in their worst stretch of the season, dropping their last six games in a row. However, Anaheim’s recent loss to the Golden Knights was somewhat encouraging, as they won the shot, faceoff, and hit battle against the division’s first-place team. But they could desperately use a win, as just one point separates them and San Jose for last place in the West, and that’s with Anaheim having three extra games played.

One of Anaheim’s youngest players has also been their brightest. Max Comtois is the team leader in goals and points, scoring eight times as part of his 13 points. Second on the team is maybe their hottest player, defenseman Cam Fowler. Fowler is riding a three-day, five-point streak that gives him a pair of goals and eight assists on the year. Rickard Rakell is another veteran who broke out of his scoreless drought with a goal and an assist on Saturday, now giving him two goals and seven assists total. Besides the other vets like Jakob Silfverberg and Ryan Getzlaf, someone else to watch is Max Jones, as the 22-year old has settled in on the first line with two goals last week.

The Ducks have consistently had to depend on John Gibson this season. The former All-Star is 5-8-4 but has a solid 2.68 GAA, and .907 save percentage.

Betting Pick

The Blues recently snapped their losing streak, while the Ducks are still stuck in theirs. And while the difference in records and certain stats is jarring, Monday’s game may be closer than some expect. Anaheim has been winning the shots on goal battle and doing a good job of controlling possession, even if the wins haven’t come as a result. St. Louis was outplayed in several ways by the Sharks on Saturday and had previously lost to San Jose and a middling Kings team twice just days prior. Here’s counting on Gibson to deliver a stellar performance and for the Ducks to do just enough to win as the home underdogs.

Pick: Ducks +125

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