Originally written on NorthWest Sports Beat  |  Last updated 3/17/12
Canucks look to snap funk…again

It is pretty hard to be a Canucks fan these days and it is hard to predict outcomes of games that they should be winning but just aren’t. Vancouver will try to avoid a three game losing streak on Saturday night when they host the worst team in the NHL – the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Columbus Blue Jackets (22-41-7) at Vancouver Canucks (42-20-8)
When: 10:00 PM ET, Saturday, March 17, 2012
Where: Rogers Arena, Vancouver, British Columbia
Broadcast: CBC, FS-O (HD)
Jackets vs. Canucks Betting Lines from Bodog
Spread: OFF
Moneyline: Jackets +240: Canucks -266
Over/Under: 5 ½ goals
*NHL ATS Matchup Report*

It is not much of a secret as to why Columbus is so bad – they are last in the NHL overall, last at home and last on the road. They are 28th in goals for and 29th in goals against. Their power play is 25th and their penalty killing is last in the NHL.

They are absolutely no match for the Canucks on paper but neither were the Canadiens and the struggling Coyotes!

Mark Letestu is the hottest Blue Jacket offensively at the moment – that’s right Mark Letestu has five points in his last five games. Rick Nash is pointless in five games and R.J. Umberger and Vaclav Prospal have failed to hit the score sheet in their last three games. Yuck!

The Canucks finally got some offense from their best players – Daniel Sedin broke an eight game pointless streak with two assists, Ryan Kesler scored for the third straight game and Christopher Higginscontinues his hot streak with five points in four games.

Columbus Blue Jackets vs Vancouver Canucks Betting Lines & Handicapping

The offense isn’t the problem. It has been… The defense and specifically Roberto Luongo.

It is true that he is not getting a lot of help but a look at his numbers is frightening – 0-3-0 in his last four games with a 5.30 goals against average and an awful .845 save percentage.

Cory Schneider should get the call – he is 2-1-1 with a 1.25 goals against average in his last four games.

Betting Prediction: Columbus is 5-13 in their last 18 Saturday games while the Canucks are 11-4 in their last 15 played on Saturday.

The Canucks are 9-1 in the last 10 meeting with Columbus.

Vancouver can’t lose to Columbus at home on a Saturday night can they? They did lay an egg against Montreal last Saturday and could conceivably lay another one this Saturday.

But Columbus made the Oilers look good the other night in a 3-0 – the Jackets are some good medicine for what is ailing their opposition.

The oddsmakers don’t have any faith in Columbus and neither do I!

Pick: Vancouver Canucks -266

Here are some interesting Player Props for Saturday’s game:

Rick Nash Points
Line = 0.5 Over (1.50) | Under (1.75)

Henrik Sedin Points
Line = 1.5 Over (1.80) | Under (1.45)

Daniel Sedin Shots on Goal
Line = 3.5 Over (1.40) | Under (1.85)

Ryan Kesler Goals
Line = 0.5 Over (1.75) | Under (1.50)

Alex Burrows Goals
Line = 0.5 Over (2.10) | Under (1.30)

Alexander Edler Shots on Goal
Line = 3.5 Over (1.75) | Under (1.50)

Kevin Bieksa Points
Line = 0.5 Over (1.45) | Under (1.80)

Vancouver Third Period Goals
Line = 1.5 Over (1.80) | Under (1.45)

Columbus Shots on Goal
Line = 28.5 Over (1.60) | Under (1.60)

Columbus Power Play Goals
Line = 0.5 Over (2.00) | Under (1.35)

Zack Kassian Points
Line = 0.5 Over (2.00) | Under (1.35)

Chris Higgins Shots on Goal
Line = 2.5 Over (1.45) | Under (1.80)

Game Links

Game 71 Blue Jackets vs. Canucks: Blowing Smoke
- NWSB Insider & Vancouver Canucks blogger Josh Hall says the Canucks would be better served losing to the Columbus Blue Jackets. What reasons could he possibly give for this?

Managing Editor “Q’s” Game Notes + Preview

Click To Bet Now At Bodog (Bovada.lv If Your In USA)

© Dave B for North West Sports Beat, 2012. | Permalink | No comment |

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