NHL Betting Preview: Anaheim Ducks vs. Colorado Avalanche – Saturday, Jan. 24, 2021

In a rematch of Friday’s contest, the 3-2-0 Colorado Avalanche will aim for a quick two-game sweep of the 1-2-2 Anaheim Ducks at the Honda Center. Friday’s game between the two teams had to be decided in overtime, where the captain Gabriel Landeskog delivered the game-winner.

Here is a closer look at both the Avalanche and the Ducks through their first five games of the season. In addition, we’ll look at the latest odds and give you a free betting pick.

Colorado Avalanche Betting Preview: More to Come

The Avalanche entered the season with mountain-high expectations. Most sportsbooks had Colorado as the favorites to win the Stanley Cup, and so far they have mostly delivered. The Avs are averaging 3.4 goals per game, ninth in the NHL, while also scoring on 25 percent of their power play opportunities and allowing just 2.4 goals as a team. But perhaps there is a higher ceiling for this team yet.

Through five games, star center Nathan MacKinnon has a team-high five assists and seven points, along with a pair of power-play goals. Not too far behind him is line-mate Mikko Rantanen, who has six points and a team-leading four goals. Defensemen Cale Makar and Samuel Girard, along with Landeskog, each have five points as well. In net, Philipp Grubauer has had an impressive start, going 3-1 with a 2.00 GAA and .931 save percentage.

After dropping a game against the Kings 4-2 with their backup in net, Colorado took an early lead against Anaheim when Joonas Donskoi netted a power play goal. That was their only goal until the third period when Rantanen earned his fourth goal of the year.

Then in overtime, Landeskog was able to put down the wrap-around winner to get the Avs back on track. Grubauer was once again strong, making 36 saves on 38 shots, while Colorado was a perfect 5-for-5 on the penalty kill.

Anaheim Ducks Betting Preview: Goals Wanted

After back-to-back years of missing the playoffs, the Ducks were hoping to correct some of their previous issues and show some significant progress. But so far, it’s been a tough go through five games. Anaheim is dead-last in the NHL with 1.6 goals scored per game and a six percent shooting percentage, while also being the only team in the league who has yet to score on the power play.

No player on Anaheim’s roster has more than three points, and the ones that do are players to skate primarily on the team’s bottom-six. Left wing Max Comtois lead the team with three goals, while fourth liners Nicolas Deslauriers and Carter Rowney have three points as well. Centers Ryan Getzlaf and Sam Steel are each looking for their first goals to go along with their two assists as well. Fortunately, goaltender John Gibson has been excellent, going 1-1-2 but with a 2.26 GAA and 92.9 save percentage.

Although they ultimately lost, Friday night’s game against Colorado may have been the best performance the Ducks have had all season. Anaheim won the shot battle 38-32 while also having nearly double the amount of blocked shots on defense as well as fewer takeaways.

They tied the game early in the second period with a goal from Hampus Lindholm, and then tied things up again just 1:22 after Colorado took the lead when Adam Henrique netted his first goal of the year. The big concern came on special teams though, where as mentioned earlier the Ducks went 0-for-5 with the extra attacker.

Avalanche vs. Ducks Betting Odds & Lines

For this game, MyBookie has the odds at -190 for Colorado, the second-largest favorite on Sunday’s slate. So one option may be the spead, which currently has the Avs -1.5 at +145.

Meanwhile, MyBookie has Anaheim at +160 on the moneyline, but -170 to cover the +1.5. For those wanting to bet the goal total, the U5.5 is slightly favored at -115.

Free Betting Pick

The Avalanche escaped on Friday with a win, but this time around I don’t think they’ll have to fight as hard. Look for Colorado to cruise to an easy win against a struggling Ducks team, making the -1.5 spread the pick for this game.

Spooky Express Free Pick: Avalanche -1.5 (+145)

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