Division leaders meet on Thursday night on NBCSN, as the Chicago Blackhawks visit the Anaheim Ducks. The Blackhawks have already wrapped up the Central Division and the top seed in the Western Conference, but Anaheim is in a battle with Edmonton and San Jose for first place in the Pacific Division. The Blackhawks and Ducks have met twice this season, with each team winning on the road. Chicago won 3-2 in Anaheim in late November, while the Ducks won 1-0 in Chicago last month.
At 10 p.m. ET, tune into NBCSN for live television coverage of this NHL game on Thursday, April 6, 2017, at Honda Center.
We'll have NHL odds at BookMaker.eu available for this and every game on the NHL Thursday schedule.
The Blackhawks really have nothing to play for, as they have clinched the top seed in the Western Conference and they are not likely to catch Washington for the President’s Trophy. Chicago was 24-12 in their first 36 road games with 17 games going over, 13 going under, with eight pushes.
Anaheim is probably going to finish first or second in the Pacific Division, as Edmonton is the real threat. The Sharks are four points back and unlikely to catch the Ducks. If the Ducks win the division they would avoid playing San Jose in the first round of the playoffs, so Anaheim does have some motivation to finish in first place. The Ducks were 26-12 in their first 38 home games with 14 games going over the total, 16 going under, with eight pushes.
The Blackhawks are not good on special teams but they still have the best record in the Western Conference. Chicago is just 18th on the power play at 18.3% but they are scoring 3 goals per game, which is 7th in the league. Chicago is 25th in penalty killing at 77.7%. They are allowing 2.5 goals per game, which is 9th in the league.
The Ducks are all about defense, as they only score 2.6 goals per game and they are just 17th on the power play at 18.8%. They are 4th in penalty killing at 84.4% and they give up just 2.4 goals per game, which is 5th in the league.
The Blackhawks were in Colorado on Tuesday and they close out the regular season in Los Angeles on Saturday. Chicago wrapped up the Central division and the top seed on Saturday. "We were pretty fortunate, some of the wins we had early on," coach Joel Quenneville said Saturday. "But I like how we've progressed. It's a tough league, tough conference, tough division, but we're happy with what we've achieved. That's not what we're looking for, but it's certainly put us in the spot we wanted.”
The Ducks hosted Calgary on Tuesday, had Wednesday off, and they close out the regular season by hosting the Kings on Sunday.
Free NHL Picks
Anaheim broke a five-game losing streak in this series by winning 1-0 in Chicago last month. It was a game in which Chicago dominated play but Jonathan Bernier stole the show and won the game for the Ducks. The last four meetings in this series have been low scoring with two games going under with two pushes. It has been a road team series, as Chicago has taken the last three games in Anaheim.
We know that Chicago will have no motivation to win this game, while Anaheim is probably going to need it if they want to win the Pacific Division. I am still a little leery about trusting Anaheim to win a big game, even at home. I think the better play in this contest is to play the total, as the teams have been playing low scoring games in this series lately. I will take Thursday’s game under the total.
NHL Odds: Blackhawks 2, Ducks 1
BookMaker offers play-by-play betting odds for live sporting events every day! The user-friendly wagering interface on your smartphone provides an easy way to place bets on the go. Mobile betting lines are updated by the minute, so click here to start gambling on thrilling live action at BookMaker Sportsbook!