NHL Odds, Preview, Prediction: Kraken vs. Canucks

NHL Odds, Preview, Prediction: Kraken vs. Canucks article feature image

Steph Chambers/Getty Images. Pictured: Martin Jones and Carson Soucy.

  • The Kraken head to Vancouver to take on the Canucks on Thursday night.
  • Seattle, in its existence, has never beat Vancouver, but our analyst thinks that may change.
  • Greg Liodice looks at the odds and offers up a betting prediction below.

Kraken vs. Canucks Odds

Kraken Odds-118
Canucks Odds-102
Over/Under6.5 (-110/-110)
Time10 p.m. ET
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.

Chapter two of the Seattle/Vancouver rivalry takes place in Vancouver. The Canucks won the first matchup 5-4 in October and will look to pick up another win Thursday night. Vancouver has had a tumultuous season so far and has gone 5-5 in its past 10, though the Canucks are coming off back-to-back losses.

While the Kraken have also gone 5-5 in their past 10, their outlook is looking brighter. Seattle is coming off solid wins against the Jets on Sunday and the Blues on Tuesday night.

Who will come out on top in Vancouver? Let’s look at the odds and make a pick:

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Seattle Kraken

Seattle’s surge is one of the NHL’s best stories and the production the Kraken have received has been remarkable. Off-season acquisition Andre Burakovsky has proven to be a genius pickup as he’s leading the team in scoring. Meanwhile, Jordan Eberle isn’t too far behind. Future superstar Matty Beniers is well on his way to becoming the Calder Trophy favorite, and Jared McCann leads the team in goals.

Who thought the Kraken would’ve had a top-10 even strength offense? Their expected goals rate has been wonderful with a 52.41 xGF%, while averaging a below average 8.6 high danger chances per game. Their power play has also worked out pretty well as they convert on the man advantage 21.4% of the time.

Along with their top notch offensive game, the Kraken’s even strength defense has flourished. While the penalty kill is among the worst in the league (69%), Seattle only allows 2.44 xGA/60, which is eighth best.

I'm curious to see who takes the net for Seattle here. While Martin Jones’ numbers are far from elite, he’s been the most effective and is leading the Kraken to wins — as seen in his impressive victory against the Blues. Jones is playing to a mediocre -0.9 goals saved above expected (GSAx) and an .889 SV%. Conversely, Philipp Grubauer has been terrible since arriving in the Pacific Northwest. The former Vezina nominee has a -1.4 GSAx and an .882 SV%.

Vancouver Canucks

There always seems to be a story with the Canucks, and this year it’s regarding captain Bo Horvat. It seems as if this will be his last year in Vancouver as he and the Canucks work on a trade to a team that’s willing to pay him. Regardless, he’s had a great year and is averaging a point per game. The Canucks have also gotten exceptional production from usual suspects J.T. Miller and Quinn Hughes, who are thought to be the future of the Canucks

To the surprise of no one, the charts don’t seem to favor the Canucks all that much. Their even strength game is below average with a 44.77 xGF%, and they generate about eight-and-a-half high danger chances per game. While their even strength game lacks, they have a dynamite power play, scoring 25.9% of the time.

Vancouver has had a rough time defensively through 31 games, and that’s putting it nicely. It allows a fifth-worst 2.93 xGA/60 and owns the league’s worst penalty kill at 67%.

Thatcher Demko was placed on IR, so it’s Spencer Martin’s net until further notice. Martin has done the best he can, and he’s managed to help the Canucks win more games than Demko, who is widely recognized as the number one netminder in Vancouver. Despite the wins, the numbers aren’t pretty as Martin is playing to a lowly -7.4 GSAx and an .885 SV%.

Kraken vs. Canucks Pick

For whatever reason, the Kraken have yet to figure out the Canucks. Seattle is 0-5-0 all-time against Vancouver. However, I’m willing to put my eggs in the Kraken’s basket here if — and only if — Jones plays.

This game is being played in Vancouver and the Canucks have an oddly poor record in front of their home fans (5-9-1). The Kraken, however, are among the best on the road with a 9-4-1 record.

Of course this all relies on goaltending. Martin has been below average, so we know what to expect of him. However, whether it's Grubauer or Jones in net for Seattle is a big difference. The Kraken seem to react much better to Jones than they do to Grubauer. So, if Jones plays, there’s a much better chance Seattle wins. Should Grubauer play, I see a better path to success in targeting the total as both teams are prone to high scoring games.

Pick:Seattle Kraken 60 Min Line (+130) if Jones plays | Over 6.5 (-110) if Grubauer plays

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