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Written by Sylas on January 17, 2014

Vancouver Canucks vs. Calgary Flames - 1/18/14: Sylas's Free NHL Hockey Pick Against the Spread
Photo by: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports

Calgary enters Vancouver hungry to steal a win at Rogers Arena after the Canucks bested the Flames twice at Scotiabank.

Rogers Arena will be the third installation of the season between the Calgary Flames and the Vancouver Canucks, both teams will be looking to break a losing streak on Saturday night.

The Calgary Flames bring back-to-back losses into Vancouver to face a team that has stolen two games this season at Scotiabank Saddledome, Calgary’s home ice. In the most recent of the Flames’ losses, the Winnipeg Jets throttled the Calgary by a score of 5-2. The Jets never allowed Calgary to make it a game, starting with four unanswered goals, and the Flames were unable to best Jets goalie Ondrej Pavelec until the third period when the game was already beyond reach. Calgary is just 2-8 in the last ten games, but oddly enough the road has treated the Flames better than home ice this season. 

Vancouver has struggled in a similar fashion, with only one regulation win in the last nine contests. To pinpoint the issue you could start with the offensive deficiency, being that the Canucks have only managed to score three or more goals in three of the last 14 games. On the other hand, after the 9-1 thrashing Vancouver took from the Anaheim Ducks on Wednesday night, one may place the blame on the defensive end. Canucks coach John Tortorella has expressed his frustrations about the team’s lack of offensive production. On Thursday, the Canucks went scoreless in a 1-0 loss to the Phoenix Coyotes, which was the second time Vancouver has laid an egg in the last three contests.

As mentioned, this will be the third of five meetings this season, with Vancouver wining both of the first two in Calgary. The Flames are 0-4 in the last four games in Vancouver and just 5-16 in the last 21 meetings overall. The Canucks are 0-6 in the last six games after scoring two or less goals in the previous game, which is clearly a recent trend that is indicative of Vancouver’s inability to score. However, Calgary ranks 29th in the NHL in goals against, allowing 3.1 per tilt. I think Vancouver will be as motivated as possible and probably wins the game; however, I would not recommend laying the price here with the Canucks. Vancouver has scored just one goal in the last three games, you get a Calgary team that performs better on the road and has been beaten twice this season at home by Vancouver, and the Flames will pay 2 to 1. If I had to play a side here, I think its Calgary. 

 

Sylas's Pick: Calgary Flames +209


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