NHL Picks: Kings vs. Canucks

PJ Laferla

Saturday, March 2, 2013 4:55 PM GMT

The Los Angeles Kings (10-6-2) will take their five-game winning streak with them on the road this Saturday night when they take on the Vancouver Canucks (10-5-4) at the Rogers Arena in B.C.

Kings vs. Canucks in Vancouver

And while both teams will be battling to pick up the win, find out who we think is the right money line play to make on the NHL odds board.

The puck is scheduled to drop at 10:00 PM EST and the game can be seen live on television, with broadcast coverage provided by Fox Sports and the NHL Network.

Sportsbooks such as 5Dimes posted an opening line of -145 favoring the home team, but that number has quickly dropped down to -123, which is a clear indication that heavy wagers are being placed on the Los Angeles Kings.

The fact that the reigning Stanley Cup champions are 5-1 in their last six meetings against the Canucks and have won four of their last five matchups in Vancouver could explain the reason for the sudden line drop.

The Kings also own some other impressive numbers that are hard to overlook, including 15-7 in their last 22 games played on the road, a perfect 4-0 in their last four against Northwest Division opponents and 35-17 in their last 52 games overall.

Meanwhile, Vancouver is just 2-5 in their last seven games overall and 1-4 in their last five when facing a Pacific Division opponent. However, the Canucks are 20-6 in their last 26 games played on at least three days of rest.

Shifting gears at bit and taking a look at the total, all the sportsbooks seem to be in agreement on an over/under line of 5 goals. However, the under has become a common trend when these two teams clash on the ice. In fact the final score in three of the last four meetings (3-0-1) has fallen below the number, while 8 of the last 13 (8-3-2) in Vancouver has also stayed under the posted total.

[gameodds]7/219816/43/us[/gameodds]

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The Pick

The Canucks and Kings have a bit of a rivalry going, meeting each other in the playoffs twice in the last three seasons, with Vancouver winning in six games during the 2010 postseason, while Los Angeles avenged their loss last season, winning in five games as underdogs, which paved the way for them to win the Stanley Cup.

I think the Kings have finally found their stride this season after no doubt going through Stanley Cup withdrawal, while the Canucks find themselves in a bit of a funk as of late.

The +113 payoff return on the Kings is a sharp play and one that should punch a winning ticket tonight, as they win this game against the Canucks.

NHL Picks: LA Kings +113 at Pinnacle