Vancouver Canucks vs. Winnipeg Jets
According to NHL betting odds the Jets are a -130 money line home favorite and the posted total is 5.5. The home team has won 5 of the last 6 meetings between these teams. This series has seen just 2 of the last 9-games go over the total. Vancouver is currently 5th in the Pacific Division, and tied for 10th overall in the Western Conference. The Jets are 6th in the Central Division, and tied for 10th overall in the Western Conference.
A Monumental Collapse
The Vancouver Canucks suffered a severe meltdown in the 3rd period in their previous game versus the New York Islanders. They led 3-0 entering the 3rd period at home, and versus a New York Islander team that has been theoretically out of the playoff race for quite some time now, somehow the Canucks allowed 7-goals in the 3rd period, and lost the game 7-4. The loss certainly applied a huge blow to the Canucks playoff chances. A loss of this nature can really diminish the confidence of a team, and it will put the character of this hockey club under a multitude of scrutiny in their upcoming games. It will all start tonight in what will be the 1st of a 4-game in 6-day road trip for the Canucks. Vancouver enters tonight losers in 12 of their last 14-games overall. The Canucks are 13-21 versus the money line on the road this season.
Fading at the Most Inopportune Time
The Winnipeg Jets were in a very good position to make a playoff push after returning from the Olympic break. Prior to the break they had won 9 of their last 13-games. However, since returning from the break they’ve gone just 2-4 including losing their last 4 in a row. If there’s any silver lining pertaining to their recent losing streak, it’s the fact that a pair of the losses occurred in overtime, and they were able to at least earn 2-points in the process. The Jets have also gone under the total in 5 of their last 6-games. Tonight will be the 1st of a 3-game in 5-day home stand for Winnipeg. Following the home stand the Jets will play 8 of their remaining 13 regular season games on the road. The Jets are 6-points behind Dallas for the final playoff position in the Western Conference, and have played 1-game more than the Stars.
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Both teams enter this game tonight having struggled in recent games. When evaluating this game from a handicapping perspective, it boils down to going against the worst of two evils. The Canucks funk has been more prolonged than that of the Jets, and they will be hard pressed to bounce back from the nightmarish home loss in their previous game. With a bit of luck the Jets easily could have come away with a couple of wins in their recent 4-game losing streak.
Free Pick: Jets -130 over the Canucks