Vancouver Canucks (2-3 SU, 2-3 PL, 2-3-0 O/U) vs Boston Bruins (2-3 SU, 1-4 PL, 3-2-0 O/U)
When: 7:05 PM EDT, Thursday, October 19, 2017
Where: TD Garden In Boston, Massachusetts
Lines: Boston -165/Vancouer +145
NHL hockey action on Thursday evening and the Pacific Division will square off with the Atlantic Division as the Vancouver Canucks rumble with the Boston Bruins at the TD Garden In Boston, Massachusetts. The Canucks enter this game off a 3-0 road win over Ottawa, while the Bruins are off a 3-1 loss to the Golden Knights on the road. Goalie Probables: Anders Nilsson will get the call for the Canucks and he will be opposed by Tuukka Rask.
Anders Nilsson Blanks The Senators
The Vancouver Canucks will have very little offense this year, so they will have to rely on defense and their play in the crease to win games on most nights. Jacob Markstrom is their main guy in the crease, but on Tuesday night it was Anders Nilsson got the start and he had a strong outing on as he stopped all 32 shots he faced in a 3-0 win over the Senators on the road. It was his first start of the year and it was just the 3rd shutout of his career. The Canucks really needed the win as they had lost their previous three games in a row, still, they need help on offense as they have yet to score more than three goals in a game. Scoring for the Canucks in the win was Brock Boeser, which was his 2nd of the year, Alexander Burmistrov, which was his first of the year and Thomas Vanek, which was his 2nd of the year. Anders Nilsson is off his first start of the year and he beat Ottawa on the road by a score of 3-0 in that game. He is expected to get the start in this one as the Canucks will go with the hot hand Last year he was 10-14 with a 2.67 GAA overall, including 3-12 with a 3.00 GAA on the road. In his career, he has gone 12-29 with a 3.11 GAA on the road and 3-4 with a 2.42 GAA during the month of October, while against the Atlantic Division he has gone 10-8 with a 2.27 GAA and 3-0 with a 1.95 GAA against the Sabres.
The Canucks have been a poor offensive team this year so far as they come in ranked 23rd in the league in scoring at 2.40 gpg, while also ranking 29th in shots taken (27.8 spg) and 23rd in power play conversions, converting on 12.0% of their chances. At the defensive end of the ice they rank 9th in goals allowed, giving up 2.60 gpg, while also ranking 13th in shots allowed (31.2) and 5th in penalty kill, allowing teams to convert on 10.5% of their chances.
Boston Hopes To Turn Slow Start Around
The Boston Bruins missed out on the postseason last year and were hoping to get off to a fast start this year, but after losing two games to Colorado, who was the worst team in the league last year and losing in Vegas shows that this team has a lot of work to do to get back to the postseason. Those two teams will likely be at the bottom of the league standings at the end of the year and if the Bruins aren’t careful, then they will be down there with them. The Bruins come in off a 3-1 loss to Vegas on the road and scoring their lone goal in the game was David Pastrnak, which was his 3rd of the year. The Bruins’ two wins this year have come against Nashville at home and Arizona on the road. Boston was 23-18 at home last year. Taking the loss against Vegas was Tuukka Rask and he has now gone 1-3 with a 3.30 GAA on the year, after going 37-25 with a 2.23 GAA last year, including 20-11 with a 2.07 GA here at home. In his career, he has gone 113-87 with a 2.11 GAA in his home games and 21-23 with a 2.49 GAA during the month of October, while against the Pacific Division he has gone 26-25 with a 2.53 GAA and he has gone 3-5 with a 2.46 GAA in his career against the Canucks.
Boston has been a bit below average on offense so far as they rank 20th in the league in scoring at 2.80 gpg, while also ranking 30th in shots taken (27.0 spg) and 13th in power play conversions, converting on 21.1% of their chances. At the defensive end of the ice they have been poor as they come in ranked 24th in goals allowed, giving up 3.60 gpg, while also ranking 5th in shots allowed (29.2 spg) and 18th in penalty kill, allowing teams to convert on 20.0% of their chances.
- 17-40 in their last 57 games playing on one days rest
- 14-41 in their last 55 when their opponent scores two goals or less in their previous game
- 13-3 in their last 16 vs. a team with a losing record
- 13-5 in their last 18 vs. the Western Conference.
The Bruins are really struggling at the moment and they have been losing to the bad teams in the league. Well, the Canucks are a bad team, but they do come in off a 3-0 road win over the Senators. The Bruins really need a win to get their confidence going and while the Canucks did just grab a win over the Senators, they are still just 8-24 their last 32 games against the Eastern Conference. I look for Boston to grab a big win in this one as their offense finally gets going against a Vancouver team that has not been great on the defensive end of the Ice. Take the Bruins in this one.