While the good news for the Vancouver Canucks is they are getting a break from facing a team that is in a playoff race, trends in their favour seem as scarce as goal scoring has been for them lately.
The Canucks are the -140 home favourite (bet $140 to win $100) on the NHL betting lines for Tuesday at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com with the Anaheim Ducks stacking up as a +115 away underdog (bet $100 to win $115), with a 5.5-goal total.
The Canucks are 4-8 at home this season against fellow Pacific Division teams and also have a mixed track record in March home games over the last two years, going 7-8 in home games during the month. This is only the third time all season, according to the OddsShark NHL Database, that Anaheim has been a road underdog of less than +125, and it split the other two games against teams that have already been eliminated from the playoffs.
The home team has won in all three games between these teams this season, with the Canucks having won 4-0 in the most recent meeting on February 25. Bo Horvat scored two goals in that game while Jacob Markstrom earned the shutout with 29 saves.
Vancouver had back-to-back home games last weekend and was shut out 5-0 by the Columbus Blue Jackets on Sunday after being defeated 3-1 by the Pacific Division-leading Calgary Flames the evening prior. Whether the Canucks can start to even up a record of being 1-7 in their last eight home games as an favorite of -130 to -150 on the moneyline will start with how well they can generate offense and pace against a team that does not have a first pairing on the level of Columbus’ Seth Jones and Zach Werenski.
It has been a season-long struggle to develop complementary scoring in support of forwards Bo Horvat, Elias Pettersson, and Brock Boeser for the Canucks. Totals bettors will have to weigh a recent run against the head-to-head trend. The total has gone OVER in the Ducks’ last three away games, but it has also gone UNDER in six of the last seven Anaheim-Vancouver games since the start of last season.
Goaltending is usually the determining factor there. So far this month, the Canucks’ Jacob Markstrom is 4-3-1 with a 2.95 goals-against average and .912 save percentage. Over the same span, the Ducks’ John Gibson is 6-3-0 with a 2.57 goals-against average and .922 save percentage.
The Canucks are 25th in the NHL in goal scoring, averaging 2.7 goals per game, while the Ducks are 31st and last, averaging 2.3. Vancouver has the NHL’s 26th-ranked power play (16.0 percent) and 15th-ranked penalty kill (80.9). Anaheim, by comparison, has the 20th-ranked power play (17.1 percent) and 25th-ranked penalty kill (78.9).
With six games to play, the Canucks are seven points adrift of the final Western Conference playoff spot. Tuesday’s game is the fourth of a seven-game homestand, which also includes contests against the Los Angeles Kings on Thursday and the Dallas Stars on Saturday. The Ducks have a two-day break after this game before finishing a Western Canada road trip against the Calgary Flames on Friday and Edmonton Oilers on Saturday.