The Vancouver Canucks (32-26-9) visit the St. Louis Blues (35-20-9) in their second of three meetings this season, with their first game ending with a 3-1 road victory for the Blues.
This St. Louis team has had its ups and downs lately, especially after the sting the Carolina Hurricanes left them with their 7-2 loss at home Saturday night.
Looking to bounce back from that, St. Louis looks like add to their series lead against the Canucks. The Blues come in as the favorites, with the moneyline set at -135 and an over/under of 6.
Can the Blues find their offense again?
Luckily for the Blues, this is a home game for them, and with a 20-9-4 record, it is safe to say they play well in St. Louis. Players like Jordan Kyrou (who hasn’t scored in nine games) and Ivan Barbashev (no goals in four games) need to get back on the scoring sheet, and I believe one, if not both, can make that happen tonight.
Vets such as Vladamir Tarasenko and Pavel Buchenvich are always due to help the team so look for either one to contribute as well.
The Blues, who are looking to keep hold of their current WC1 spot in the standings, need a big bounce-back game at home after a rough 7-2 loss. With the help from the likes of Tarasenko, Buchenvich, Kyrou, and Barbashev, the Blues have the talent and offense as they average 3.50 goals for per game this season which ranks them 7th on the year.
With a slightly under average 3.0 GFA in their last five games, look for the Blues to find the back of the net more than a few times tonight.
Will JT Miller get the help he needs?
The Canucks will be led by JT Miller, who leads the team in points, goals, and assists this season and is averaging over a point per game. The Canucks will be looking for other top guys such as Brock Boeser, Elias Pettersson, and Bo Horvat to get involved and help add to the scoring sheet.
Although they have been on the road since March 23rd, this Vancouver team plays better on the road than they do at their home arena, posting a current 18-13-4 road record.
Both teams have had their fair share of up and down moments this season, especially in their last five games. The Canucks have won two of their last five games and not only scored 13 goals in that span but also allowed 13 goals in those five games. The Blues have only won one of their last five games and scored a solid 15 goals but allowed a staggering 21 goals, which is 4.2 goals allowed per game.
While the Blues are the better scoring team, the Canucks hold a slightly better GAA this season, sitting in the 10th spot with a 2.81 GAA. The Blues are just two spots back at the 12th spot with a 2.88 GAA on the year.
With that slight edge going to the Canucks, they will need to step up on the offensive side to compete with the Blues’ 3.50 GFA versus their own 2.82 average. With JT Miller being the most consistent on the team, he will need guys like Boeser, Pettersson, and Horvat to all play their parts on the offense.
With the Blues’ advantage on the offense and a needed bounce-back game, look for the Blues to hold these Vancouver Canucks off for the win. At -135 moneyline odds, go with the St. Louis Blues at home.