Columbus Blue Jackets (8-11-3) at Vancouver Canucks (11-8-4)
|Date & Time||Friday November 22, 2013, 10:00 PM (EST)|
The Line: Vancouver Canucks -186 / Columbus Blue Jackets +169 --- Over/Under: 5
The Blue Jackets look to salvage their Western Canada road trip as they wrap it up in Vancouver on Friday night against the struggling Vancouver Canucks.
Columbus had a very rough start to their Western Canada road swing as they started in Edmonton against the underachieving Oilers but left with a very sour taste in their mouths as they were waxed by a 7-0 mark heading into a back to back in Calgary the following night. These road trips are very tough for a lot of teams and the Jackets despite a lot of experience in the Western Conference don’t usually fare well either. However, the Jackets shook off a dismal outing and responded in a big way by downing the Calgary Flames on Wednesday and they can escape with a 2-1 mark which would completely validate their sloppy start at Rexall Place. Sergei Bobrovsky gets the call here as he matches up with Eddie Lack who is getting his fifth start of the year for the Canucks.
The Canucks are in the midst of one of their worst stretches in recent memory as they have lost 7 of their last 10 contests and have slipped into 5th place in the Pacific division. Vancouver is sitting at 4-4-2 at home this season which is very uncharacteristic of them as they’re usually one of the best homes teams in the NHL but nothing has been characteristic of the Canucks this year as they’re slumping by their standards and need to right the ship quickly. Eddie Lack gets the call tonight to give Roberto Luongo a chance to rest before Saturday night’s encounter in Chicago which will be a huge make or break type game for the Canucks moving forward. While you have to consider each game in isolation it is hard not to look at this as a look ahead spot for the Canucks and while John Tortorella will be fuming after their loss to the Panthers on Tuesday I really like the value here for the Jackets. Treading lightly as it isn’t a strong play but well worth the risk in my opinion.