[8:30 PM] Ducks @ Stars

Who will WIN this matchup?

Anaheim Ducks

@ Dallas Stars


Starting Goalies:

John Gibson  (ANA): Confirmed

Antti Niemi  (DAL): Confirmed


Current odds:

Anaheim Ducks: (+105)

Dallas Stars: (-125)


A pair of division winners who saw their playoff runs halted prematurely will square off in the season opener when the Dallas Stars host the Anaheim Ducks on Thursday night. Dallas piled up a Western Conference-best 109 points but suffered a second-round postseason exit at the hands of St. Louis while Pacific Division champion Anaheim lost in the first round to Nashville.

Corey Perry has pumped 110 goals over the past three seasons after connecting 34 times in 2015-16, but he failed to tally in the seven-game playoff loss to the Predators. Captain Ryan Getzlaf topped the club with 63 points, but his 13 goals marked the second-lowest total of his career, while Ryan Kesler and Jakob Silfverberg are also coming off 20-goal campaigns. Anaheim has holes to fill with a pair of restricted free agents, defenseman Hampus Lindholm and forward Rickard Rakell, still in Sweden while at a contract impasse with the club. While there is plenty of talent at the blue line, led by Cam Fowler and Sami Vatanen, John Gibson must show he can be No. 1 goaltender after Frederik Andersen was traded to Toronto.

Benn led the NHL in scoring with 87 points in 2014-15 and finishing second to Chicago’s Patrick Kane with a career-best 41 goals and 89 points last season. Linemate Tyler Seguin, who had his Achilles sliced by a skate late last season and sustained a hairline fracture of his heel at the World Cup, is expected to ready for the season opener and ready to build on his 107 goals scored in the past three seasons with Dallas. Jason Spezza, who matched Seguin with 33 goals, centers a potent second line featuring Patrick Sharp and Jiri Hudler, but three players are gone from the defense. Netminders Kari Lehtonen and Antti Niemi each won 25 games last season but sported save percentages of .906 and .905, respectively.

Gibson has allowed two goals in winning both career starts versus Dallas.

 Seguin has not scored a goal in nine career games against the Ducks.

Anaheim, which plays its first five games on the road, won only once in October (1-7-2) last season.


StreakSmarts Pick: Dallas Stars

Confidence: 5/10

StreakSmarter Pick