Anaheim Ducks (15-5-2) at Pittsburgh Penguins (12-8-0)
|Date & Time||Monday November 18, 2013, 7:30 PM (EST)|
The Line: Pittsburgh Penguins -163 / Anaheim Ducks +148 --- Over/Under: 5
The Ducks and Penguins look to get back on track as both teams sustained a loss in their last outing and they square off in Pittsburgh on Monday.
Anaheim has cooled off of late after their scorching start to the season but they remain one of the best teams in the league and are still sitting atop the Western Conference standings in a tie with the Chicago Blackhawks. Anaheim has been a contender over the past few seasons and while they may still be a step or two away from replicating the roster from their last Staley Cup title they are surely close to it and will try to prove that against the powerhouse Penguins tonight. Jonas Hiller has been great for the Ducks this season as the trade rumors continue to swirl around his name as Anaheim has a ton of talent in the crease both in a backup capacity and in the minors. However, Hiller remains the guy for now and he will have to be on point here as they face a Pens team who is coming off a loss which I’m sure they won’t be taking lightly especially in front of their home fans.
The Penguins continue to be one of if not the favourite to win the Stanley Cup as they possess a handful of world class talents at every position on the ice but perhaps none more important that Sidney Crosby. Crosby continues to be a force in the offensive zone and now that James Neal has recovered from his bizarre rib injury it gives Crosby and the rest of the Pens’ offense a little more wiggle room and production. Pittsburgh hasn’t really blown anyone away so far this season as they sit a point behind the Caps for top spot in their division and are 12-8 through their first 20 games putting them seven points back of their opponents from Anaheim tonight. Yet the Pens remain big favourites here which actually plays well into our favour as the Ducks continue to get no love from the odds makers and while Pittsburgh is strong at home and the Ducks haven’t been anything special on the road they’re more than worth a look here and I think taking a shot with Anaheim here is the right play.