When: 7:00 PM ET, Tuesday, October 18, 2016
Where: Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey
Lines: Anaheim -111/ New Jersey +101
Tonight a couple of teams that are looking for their first wins of the year will square off at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey as the Anaheim Ducks tangle with the New Jersey Devils. The Ducks are off a 3-2 loss at the Islanders, while the Devils are off a 3-2 loss at Tampa Bay. The Ducks have won the last five games in this series.
Offense An Issue In The Early Going
The Anaheim Ducks have played three games and have yet to score more than two goals in a game. They are now 0-3 on the year after winning the Pacific Division last year. Obviously this is not the start that they were expecting, but they did start slow last year until getting it together over the last three-fourth of the season. Last year they also started slow on offense, so that is nothing new for them either. The Ducks come in off a 3-2 loss in OT at the Islanders and were outshot 30-26 in the game, but they did win the faceoff battle by a count of 38-24. The Ducks did fall behind 2-0 in that game before getting two goals in the 3rd period to tie the game and send it to OT. Scoring for the Ducks in the game was Cam Fowler (2) and Ryan Getzlaf (1).
Taking the loss in the game was John Gibson, who is 0-2 with a 3.59 GAA on the year. Last year he was 21-13-4 with a 2.07 GAA, including 8-6-1 with a 2.43 GAA on the road, while vs the Devils in his career he has gone 1-0 with a 1.00 GAA. Last year the Ducks ranked 17th in the league in scoring at 2.62 gpg, while also ranking 12th in shots taken (30.3 spg) and 1st in power play conversions, converting on 22.9% of their chances. At the defensive end of the ice they were very strong as they ranked 1st in goals allowed, giving up 2.29 gpg, while also ranking 4th in shots allowed (27.5) and 1st in penalty kill, allowing teams to convert on 12.8% of their chances.
Devils Still Looking For First Win
The Devils are winless, just like the Ducks are and just like the Ducks they are struggling on offense as they have scored just three total goals in their first two games. Their first game was a 2-1 loss at Florida and in game two they fell by a score of 3-2 at Tampa Bay. Last year this was the worst offensive team in the league and so far they have looked bad on that end of the ice. Scoring for New Jersey in the loss to the Lightning was Kyle Palmieri and Travis Zajac. Those goals came in the first period and gave the devils a 2-0 lead at the time, but they just couldn’t hold on to it. The Devils really need to get their offense going this year or it could be another season without a trip to the playoffs.
Taking the loss in the game was Cory Schneider, who has gone 0-2 with a 2.48 GAA in two games this year so far. Last year he was 27-25-6 with a 2.15 GAA, including 13-13-4 with a 2.22 GAA at home, while vs the Ducks he is 4-3-1 with a 2.49 GAA. Last year New Jersey ranked 30th in the league in scoring at 2.22 gpg, while also ranking 30th in shots taken (24.4 spg) and 9th in power play conversions, converting on 19.9% of their chances. At the defensive end of the ice they were very strong as they ranked 8th in goals allowed, giving up 2.46 gpg, while also ranking 8th in shots allowed (28.6) and 8th in penalty kill, allowing teams to convert on 17.0% of their chances.
- The Under is 4-1-2 in their last seven road games
- The Under is 8-1-2 in the last 11 meetings in New Jersey
New Jersey is:
- The Under is 29-11-12 in their last 52 vs. a team with a winning % below .400
- The Under is 44-19-17 in their last 80 home games
I like the Under in this game. Both of these offenses are struggling out the gate and I will look for that to continue here. New Jersey has been a big Under team over the last couple of years, especially here at home. The last five games played here between these teams have all put up five goals or less and this one will as well. At the very worst this game will be a push as a fully do not see more than five goals being scored.