NHL Odds, Preview, Prediction: Canucks vs. Islanders (February 9)
Photo by Jeff Vinnick/NHLI via Getty Images. Pictured: Ilya Sorokin (#30, left) and Scott Mayfield (#24, right) of the New York Islanders.
Canucks vs. Islanders Odds
|Time||7:30 p.m. ET|
|Odds via FanDuel Sportsbook. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.|
Ex-Canucks captain Bo Horvat will skate for the first time versus his former side Thursday, as his Islanders will look to extend its winning streak to five.
New York is priced at -235 to do so, with the number being particularly long due to the fact that the Canucks played last night at MSG and the Islanders in a spell of excellent play.
Canucks Compounding Flaws With Netminding
Whether it’s Rick Tocchet, Bruce Boudreau, Travis Green, or Scotty Bowman coaching the Canucks, it seems that the current roster makeup is destined for failure.
Despite the fact that Tocchet does seem to be driving a renewed sense of urgency to compete at the highest level among the Canucks roster, the flaws of this defensive core will seemingly always in part define the team and were very prominent in last night’s loss.
Talented winger Andrei Kuzmenko drew the ire of Tocchet and was benched for the third — perhaps rightfully so, but the greatest problem still seems to lie on the back end as it has with the previous two coaches.
Blue-liners Tyler Myers, Oliver Ekman-Larsson, Cory Stillman all failed to make very standard plays at times last night and made life easy on the Rangers.
Poor goaltending from each of their various options has helped to compound the Canucks’ other flaws this season. Collin Delia will likely start tonight, and has been the top option with a -0.5 GSAx and .893 save % in 12 appearances.
Islanders On a Tear … And Getting Better?
GM Lou Lamoriello came out of left field and added one of the biggest names on the market by acquiring Bo Horvat, who is in the midst of a career season.
The move clearly caught the attention of his team, which has now rattled off four consecutive wins with a +8 goal differential and has played to an elite expected goals-for % of 56.17 in those four games.
The Islanders’ overall process has looked more impressive, particularly in the offensive zone, where it has struggled to create anything meaningful all season long.
It would be fair to note New York’s schedule has been very favorable during this tear, but tonight’s matchup is again very soft and a great spot to continue displaying improved offensive form.
Ilya Sorokin has been confirmed as New York’s starter for this matchup. Sorokin has played to a +27.3 GSAx and .923 save % throughout 39 appearances.
Canucks vs. Islanders Pick
This is a massive night for newcomer Horvat, and everybody in the Islanders locker room will know it. The opportunity to leapfrog back into the playoffs is also on the line, and this should be a spot where we see a sharp effort from the Islanders.
New York has done a tremendous job of managing the puck recently, and are not entirely just relying on Sorokin to steal games.
With that said Sorokin also offers a massive edge in goal over Delia in particular, and he should receive sharper defensive play from his side.
The Canucks defensive core has a number of bodies who looked awful last night at MSG and will seemingly always offer up some defensive breakdowns under pressure.
Another performance similar to what we have seen recently should go a long ways versus Vancouver on night two of a back-to-back and I believe there’s a good chance this game gets away from the Canucks.
The Islanders can be found at +120 to cover -1.5, and I would play that all the way down to +105.
Pick: New York Islanders -1.5 +120 (Play to +105)
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