A week ago, it didn’t seem realistic that Canucks would have a better shot at the playoffs than the Golden Knights. But since losing to the Canucks in overtime on April 12, Vegas has now lost three of four games, and the Canucks have stayed red hot, having now won six in a row.
I was at that April 12th game, and the Golden Knights didn’t play horrible, but at the end of the day, they lacked a certain playoff-type intensity that the Canucks brought at the right moments and have had with them for most of the time since Bruce Boudreau took over behind the bench (they’re now 29-13-8 under Bruce).
Again last night, Vegas didn’t play terrible, in fact they out shot and outplayed Jersey for stretches. But they lacked sharpness in all facets for a full 60 or even 40 and a lack of a will to win even against one of the league’s worst teams. Meanwhile at Rogers Arena the Canucks were buzzing in front of a rocking Monday night crowd, taking care of business easily against a current playoff team in Dallas.
I was going to write an article a week ago about how the Canucks likely won’t make playoffs but are at least fighting for one another and their season and are playing the right way to set the tone for what will be likely pretty much the same team returning next year. Instead, that good, hard team play and intensity has been enough to get them right back in the thick of things in the playoff race.
Tonight the Canucks host the Senators with a chance to stretch their current home stand record to 5-0, stretch their winning streak to seven games, and move one point ahead of the Golden Knights with the same number of games played. A win would also put them just two points behind where the Kings currently sit but they will also be in action tonight playing host to Anaheim. Vegas and Vancouver will both have a game in hand on LA after tonight as well.
With the Senators rolling into town from Seattle having played last night (and losing) it’s a gambling spot I love where an inferior team is on the second half of a back to back on the road. The Senators play hard but are missing a lot of pieces right now. This is also once again the biggest game of the year for the Canucks to keep pace and they are red hot. Add all of these factors up and I LOVE the Canucks to win tonight. There isn’t much value on the money line but I am confident in taking them at -1.5 the way they are playing and scoring as of late.
Worth noting is that Halak will likely be in net while Demko gets a breather so stay away from the play if you don’t trust the backup but I’ve seen enough very solid play over his last few starts and enough from the team in front of him to still feel great about the bet. The current odds for Canucks -1.5 are +105 in the BETUS Sportsbook.