The Anaheim Ducks are set to take on the Chicago Blackhawks tonight in Game 5 of the NHL Western Conference Finals. The game is scheduled for an 9:00 p.m. start time and it will be televised nationally on the NBC Sports Network. Currently the betting odds for the game have the Blackhawks favored to pick up another win in this one.
Chicago won a massive Game 4 in this series, evening it up at 2-2 in Saturday's contest in the Midwest. Today the series shifts out to Anaheim, where the Ducks will look to win a Game 5 situation that would give them just one win needed to reach the Stanley Cup Finals. Both teams have been able to win on each other's ice in this series, the Ducks are looking to hold serve in this one tonight.
The Ducks have to be a bit annoyed that both of their losses in this series have come in overtime, but that does help them realize they can play with the star-studded Blackhawks on the big stage. Chicago is loaded with talent all over the roster and they play well in big situations. Anaheim has always been a great regular season team, but they are really putting it together in this post season. The Ducks have not lost yet in regulation during the playoffs.
Anaheim has been physical in the series, looking to wear down the Blackhawks. One would assume that will continue in tonight's contest as well. Chicago has been looking to be more physical and had a bunch of hits in the fourth game of this series. Anaheim, though, took advantage and scored three times early in the third period as they were skating around well.
Chicago's back line has to continue to play well for the Blackhawks to have any success. While it's been a grinding, physical series for the Blackhawk defensemen they will need to continue to adjust to that style of hockey.
Frederik Andersen and Corey Crawford have both been solid when they needed to be and these games have been close. Both will need to continue that type of play in tonight's game for their teams to have a better chance of winning the pivotal fifth game of the series. Anaheim finds a way to win this one at home, where they have been very good this post season, other than an overtime Game 2 loss to Chicago in this series.
Free Pick: Anaheim
NFL Free Pick: Green Bay Packers at Chicago Bears
According to professional sports bettor Steve Fezzik, the early bird can catch a profitable worm if they put money down on Green Bay's opening week showing against the Chicago Bears. With the line currently at -4.5 at most Vegas sports books, Fezzik predicts it will move to -6.5 come game day, as no one is going to be betting on the Jay Cutler-helmed Bears, so the money will pour in on Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers. With that being the case, time strike early while the iron is hot.
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