NHL Picks: Canucks vs. Penguins Saturday Picks

David Lawrence

Friday, October 18, 2013 12:31 PM GMT

Friday, Oct. 18, 2013 12:31 PM GMT

We take an early look at the Saturday NHL battle between the Vancouver Canucks and the Pittsburgh Penguins. Where do we believe that the best NHL betting value lies in this afternoon matchup?

After struggling at home, the Vancouver Canucks have found some momentum on the road. They’ve begun their seven-game road trip with two straight wins and are now 3-1-0 in away games this season. On Saturday, they’ll make a matinee trip to face the Pittsburgh Penguins in a 1:00 PM ET start. Make sure your sports picks are in, as this is an early puck-drop.

Follow live NHL odds with SBR Odds.

The Vancouver Canucks can win because… 

They’ve got some momentum going. The Canucks have won back-to-back games while allowing just two goals. That’s a good sign for the Canucks. People who make their NHL picks know that John Tortorella’s systems are all about defense and goaltending. If the Canucks are getting it done in that realm, that means they are heeding their coach’s message. 

The Pittsburgh Penguins are going to be a challenging opponent but it’s not like the Pens have really been tested so far. Their only real win against a team with a winning record was Tampa Bay. 

The Pittsburgh Penguins can win because…

Vancouver doesn’t have the offense to keep. The Canucks scoring was significantly down last season and it’s even worse this year. They’ve scored three or less in six of their eight games and while their defense has looked good at times, they have given up goals to any credible offense. San Jose scored four goals (twice), Montreal scored four goals and Calgary notched four goals. The Penguins have scored the second-most goals in the NHL's Eastern Conference. They should be able to breakthrough against Vancouver. 

Home-ice advantage should be a key to this game as the Pens have played great in front of their own audience this season. They’ve outscored their opponents 15-4 in their four contests (4-0).

[gameodds]7/245817/?r3=43-19-349/dec&r-1=43-19-349/us[/gameodds]

Outlook & Pick 

This is the Pens game to lose. The Canucks have been effective on the road but they won’t look so hot in Pittsburgh playing at a time that is effectively 10 AM for them. Take the Pens. 

Pick: Penguins at 5Dimes
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