For The Gamblers!
Canucks Drive for Five in a Row – Host Improving Columbus Tuesday Night
The Vancouver Canucks appear to have gotten over the slump that saw them fall out of first place in the Northwest. It’s not like they have been blowing teams out of the water (four straight one goal victories) but they are getting results and have now climbed back over Minnesota for top spot in the division.
Up next for the Canucks is the surprising Columbus Blue Jackets who earned at least a point in 12 straight games (8-0-4) before a loss last time out versus Nashville.
Columbus Blue Jackets (13-13-3-3) at Vancouver Canucks (17-9-1-5)
When: 10:00 PM ET, Tuesday, March 26, 2013
Where: Rogers Arena, Vancouver, British Columbia
Broadcast: FS-O, SNET-P
Jackets vs. Canucks Betting Lines from Bodog
Columbus Blue Jackets +1½ -175 +173 Ov 5 -116
Vancouver Canucks -1½ +155 -191 Un 5 +105
The Columbus Blue Jackets have somehow climbed to the .500 mark on the season and have been playing their best hockey in quite some time. But most of their recent success came on home ice. Away from home this team is an unflattering 3-9-1 on the season and they are 0-3-2 in their last five trips to Vancouver.
The Columbus offense still ranks near the bottom of the NHL heading into Tuesday’s game – an average of just 2.22 goals per game so far. Nobody has really lit it up for Columbus but RJ Umberger has arguably been the best Jacket the last week or so. He has four points in his last three games, Derek Mackenzie, Colton Gillies and Nick Foligno each have two points in their last two games and Jack Johnson has three points in three.
The Blue Jackets defense has been OK this season in allowing a middle-of-the-pack 2.56 goals per game. They can thank Sergei Bobrovsky for that. He will be looking to bounce back after giving up four goals on 11 shots against Nashville after going 8-0-3 in his previous 11 starts with a sparkling 1.34 GAA.
The Vancouver Canucks have battled injuries, suspensions and some average play from Daniel Sedin and Henrik Sedin but somehow this club has righted the ship and has looked good during a four game win streak. Credit Coach Alain Vigneault for pushing the right buttons at the right times.
Cory Schneider also deserves a ton of credit for Vancouver’s recent uptick. After being “average” for a good portion of the season, Schneider has been stellar in stopping 111 of 116 shots during his personal four game win streak. He stole the win against St. Louis; he was terrific in Los Angeles and was good again in Colorado.
Schneider is 5-1-1 with a 2.24 GAA in his last seven versus Columbus. It may be rest time for Schneider on Tuesday however – Roberto Luongo may get the call after defeating the Jackets in the last meeting. Luongo, 7-4-3 with a 2.47 GAA, has allowed 12 goals during a 1-2-0 stretch in which he has a 4.05 GAA.
Offensively the Canucks are still struggling a tad. A three goal game against Colorado Sunday seems like an offensive explosion doesn’t it?
It has been the second liners that have really elevated their games as of late – Mason Raymond has four points in four games, Jannik Hansen has 12 points in 13 games and Chris Tanev has a pair of points in his last three.
Alex Burrows scored a beauty Sunday but has just one point in five games, Daniel Sedin is pointless in three games and Kevin Bieksa hasn’t registered a point in his last five – and the Canucks are still winning!
Dave’s Won’t Cost You Anything Free Betting Prediction:
A few trends to consider:
• CLB are 2-6 in their last 8 Tue. games.
• CLB are 15-44 in their last 59 road games.
• Under is 8-3 in CLB last 11 road games.
• Over is 6-2-1 in VAN last 9 home games.
• Under is 7-1 in the last 8 meetings.
• CLB are 2-11 in the last 13 meetings.
The fact that the Canucks are winning without contributions from their best players is a very, very good sign. I, like many have renewed confidence in the Canucks – the goaltending and defense have gotten back to an acceptable level, the power play is starting to show signs of life and vancouver will get Alex Edler back from suspension Tuesday night.
They are not quite playing at the elite level that we have become accustomed to but there is no denying that a few aspects of their game is coming around. The Jackets are miserable on the road – something that Vancouver should be able to take advantage of.
The Canucks have seized first in the Northwest again – don’t expect them to give it up easily!