Get Good Value & Back Canucks +1.5 As Your NHL Pick Against Blues

Dana Lane

Friday, March 25, 2016 4:10 PM UTC

Friday, Mar. 25, 2016 4:10 PM UTC

The Canucks have underacheived all season but this is an opportunity to show the league they aren't nearly as bad as people think. Check out my preview and NHL pick inside. 

Vancouver Canucks vs. St.Louis Blues
There is no doubt in my mind that the Vancouver Canucks are the worst team in hockey right now but I have never fully jumped on that train of thought that its unfixable. Their recent six game slide as bolstered that ranking but perhaps it's not as bleak as it seems.   Whether you realize it or not Vancouver is second in the league with 13 overtime losses which means that they were is a position to win allot of hockey games if a few bounces went their way including a 3-2 shootout loss to the playoff bound Nashville Predators last night. As a +235 dog on the NHL odds boards the Canucks led Nashville 2-0 until almost eight minutes left in the game.  Even in the overtime period, with both teams scoreless, Nashville outshot Vancouver 6-0 while failing to score.  You could make the argument that until the extra period Vancouver was the better of the two teams. 

This is the perfect spot for a letdown as the Blues will travel to Washington, D.C. to face the Capitals Saturday night.  There is no doubt that if I'm Ken Hitchcock this is a game that I might use to cut down on my top players minutes.  

Perhaps we are starting to see some life from the Canucks power as they scored on one of two chances after going 0-25 in their last eight games. They expect Jannik Hansen to return, their second leafing scorer. Hansen has missed their previous 11 games He is a terrific two way player who will move right back in at the top line. To be a +17 on a team like the Canucks is quite a feat so his return will instantly make them better. 

In goal, Ryan Miller, has continued to do good work despite the support around him. In their loss to the Blues, Miller had 47 saves and tonight's starter, Jacob Markstrom, had 30 saves against the Predators. Markstrom has lost three straight games but has played well enough to warrant a play tonight.  He registered a career high 47 saves in a 2-0 loss to Winnipeg on Tuesday. On the road the Swedish netminder has been even better with a 6-4-2 record with a 2.24 goals against average in 12 starts. 

There are a few trends that actually point in Vancouver's favor. In the third game in a three in four situation the Canucks are have won 12 of their last 17 games and are 10-4 in their last 14 after playing an overtime game the previous day. Vancouver has faired well against the Blues winning four of their last five at Scottstrade and six of their last eight overall.

The Blues have a mini 1-4 trend in their last five home games after coming off a road trip of seven or more days. 

We are backing the Canucks tonight as our NHL pick but we're taking the puckline at a small price just in case. 

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NHL Pick: Vancouver Canucks +1.5 
Best Line Offered: at Bodog


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