For The Gamblers!
Headline: Streaking Oilers Continue Playoff Push Against Suddenly Struggling Canucks
The Vancouver Canucks will look to avenge a 4-0 loss to the Edmonton Oilers Saturday night when they play host to Edmonton on Thursday night. Both teams are currently locked in fights in the standings – for Vancouver they are battling Minnesota for first in the Northwest and for the Oilers they find themselves in a dogfight with Nashville and St. Louis for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Conference.
Edmonton Oilers (16-13-4-3) at Vancouver Canucks (19-11-1-5)
When: 10:30 PM ET, Thursday, April 4, 2013
Where: Rogers Arena, Vancouver, British Columbia
Broadcast: SNET-W, SNET-P
Oilers vs. Canucks Betting Lines from Bodog
Edmonton Oilers +1½ -190 +163 Ov 5 -116
Vancouver Canucks -1½ +165 -180 Un 5 +105
Edmonton has won five straight games ahead of the Thursday night tilt while the Canucks have lost two in a row.
Those of us that were counting out the Edmonton Oilers a couple of weeks ago are eating a little crow today – the young team is on fire and threatening to knock a few perennial playoff teams down the standing.
While the offense has stolen the show, defense and goaltending has been strong for the Oilers during their five game win streak. The Oilers have allowed just seven goals in their last five games – zero the last time these teams met on Saturday night. Devan Dubnyk has been terrific as of late. He is 4-0-0 in his last four games with a 2.40 GAA and .938 save % age.
The Canucks were unable to solve him Saturday and based on his recent form may have some issues Thursday as well.
As good as the defense has been, the Oilers offense has been on fire the last five games. They have scored 25 times during their streak and their young guns have quickly become the best line in hockey.
Taylor Hall has seven goals, including a hat trick Saturday night, eight assists and a plus-9 rating over that span, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins has a goal and nine assists, while Jordan Eberle has five goals and three assists and they’re both plus-9 over during the win streak. As a trio, Hall, Nugent-Hopkins and Eberle have combined for 32 points during Edmonton’s five-game win streak – amazing!
Nial Yakupov and Justin Shultz have four points in two games while Ryan Whitney, Ryan Jones and Jeff Petry are all averaging a point per game over their last three.
Things are good in Edmonton – that`s for sure!
With the trade deadline finally out of the way, the Vancouver Canucks can finally put all of their attention to what they do on the ice! Roberto Luongo is their team mate for the rest of the season and Derek Roy will come in to fill an offensive void that has been lacking seemingly all season for this team.Ryan Kesler remains out although he is close to returning, David Booth is all but an afterthought and now Mason Raymond is questionable after sitting out Monday`s game with an undisclosed injury. Welcome Mr. Derek Roy – your presence is more than needed!
The Canucks enter Thursday`s game with the same old problem – goal scoring. Outside of a four goal explosion against Colorado (two of those goals were empty-net) the Canucks have scored just 15 times in nine games. The power play is still dreadful and the Sedins seem to be invisible.
Unlike during Vancouver`s six game win streak, the goaltending isn`t stealing games at present. Corey Schneider is 0-2-2 with a 4.92 GAA and .865 save % age in his last two games and Roberto Luongo is 2-4-0 with a 3.71 GAA and .859 save % age in his last seven appearances.
It is unclear who will start Thursday but either goaltender will have a difficult time slowing the uber-hot Edmonton offense.
Dave’s Won’t Cost You Anything Free Betting Prediction:
A few trends to consider:
• Under is 6-2 in EDM last 8 Thu. games.
• EDM are 35-89 in their last 124 road games.
• Under is 31-14-7 in EDM last 52 overall.
• Under is 7-0-2 in VAN last 9 overall.
• Under is 15-5-6 in VAN last 26 vs. Northwest.
• VAN are 6-2 in their last 8 overall.
• EDM are 2-8 in the last 10 meetings in Vancouver.
The good news for the Vancouver Canucks is that Edmonton played last night. The bad news is that they scored eight times in that game and come to Vancouver brimming with confidence. For the Canucks to win Thursday they are going to have to score some goals – something that they have struggled mightily to do this whole season.
That said, I think Edmonton gets it done again. They have averaged 5 goals per game during their five game win streak – they will likely need just three to claim victory Thursday.