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This game is sure to be intense, as the Minnesota Wild travel to the windy city to do battle with the Chicago Blackhawks. The Minnesota Wild come into this game ranked 16th in the NHL, posting a record of 16-12-5 this season. The Wild are coming in hot, going 7-1-2 over their last 10 games. The Chicago Blackhawks rank 28th in the NHL with a record of 12-15-6 thus far. Chicago is riding a three-game losing streak heading into tonight's matchup. Despite these two teams trending in opposite directions, this is the NHL, that means any team can take away a win and get things right on any given night.
Minnesota Wild ReviewThe Minnesota Wild enter this game with an offense that ranks 18th in the NHL in goals scored per game on the road with 2.60. The Wild will look towards Eric Staal to light a fire in the offense tonight. Staal has been the most impressive scorer on the Wild this season, racking up 23 points so far. Staal will need to light up the goal horn more often if this Minnesota team wants a shot to win tonight and a shot to make the playoffs.
Minnesota has a defense ranked 25th when on the road this season, allowing an average of 3.55 goals a game. Devan Dubnyk will be getting the start tonight, serving as the secondary goalie so far this season. Dubnyk will need to improve his game tonight to help his team get two points towards the playoffs.
Chicago Blackhawks ReviewThe Chicago Blackhawks boast an offense ranked just 24th in the NHL in regards to scoring when at home, averaging 2.82 goals per game. The Blackhawks will need Patrick Kane to continue his monster season here tonight. Kane has racked up 15 goals and 22 assists so far and will need to be every bit as good at creating opportunities tonight to end this losing streak.
The Blackhawks will look towards Robin Lehner to protect the crease in this battle. Lehner has been splitting time with Corey Crawford this season and has shown flashes of brilliant play. Lehner remains inconsistent and will need to focus in tonight's matchup if the Blackhawks want to beat the Wild.
- Blackhawks are 1-5 in their last 6 home games.
- Wild are 4-1 in their last 5 vs. Western Conference.
- Wild are 7-2 in their last 9 overall.
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
Take the Minnesota Wild on the road in this game. The Wild are one of the hottest teams in the NHL, winning 7 of their last 10 games. On the other side of the ice, Chicago has won just 3 of their last 10 games, dropping the last 3 in a row. The Wild will make that number 4 here tonight, as Erik Staal and company will have no problem exploiting this shaky defence Minnesota's goaltending has not been great this season, but the Chicago offense is unable to perform consistently at a high level, and Minnesota can exploit that in this one by just relying on their defensemen to not make bad turnovers or get caught out of position.
Prediction: Minnesota Wild
Full-Game Total Pick
I would take the under in this game. While both of these teams have proven that defense is not their speciality, offense has been even worse for both clubs. When teams such as these face-off, with the trends that the scorers have shown, the under is the play. No one on either team, not Erik Staal or Patrick Kane, can spark this offense and get everything going right. These teams have some spurts of scoring, but the hot skaters cannot carry a team and score all the goals. Do not get cute tonight, just take the under.
Prediction: Under 6.5