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Canucks Look to Draw First Blood vs Blues

Bo Horvat #53 and Zack MacEwen #71 of the Vancouver Canucks react after Horvat scored against goaltender Alex Stalock #32 of the Minnesota Wild in the third period of Game Four of the Western Conference Qualification Round.

The defending champion St. Louis Blues faltered in round-robin play and now face a difficult first-round matchup as they kick off their Stanley Cup Round of 16 series Wednesday against Vancouver at Rogers Place in Edmonton. The Blues dropped all three of their games following the restart and could be in tough against a Vancouver side that ousted Minnesota in four games.

Vancouver Canucks vs St. Louis Blues
  • Date/Time: August 12, 10:30 p.m. ET
  • Arena: Rogers Place
  • TV Coverage: HNIC, SNET, NBCSN, FS-MW
  • Opening Odds: Blues -154 | O/U 5.5 (Line History)
  • Canucks vs Blues Matchup Report

Opening Odds Analysis

The Blues opened the festivities as -154 favorites but have settled in between -140 and -145 in most spots. The total opened at 5.5, with the U5.5 dipping from -147 into the -130 to -135 range.

Vancouver News & Notes

It took a game for the Canucks to find their game legs, but they bounced back in a big way by outscoring the Wild 12-7 to win the final three games of their best-of-five set. And they were treated to a balanced attack in the series victory; nine different players scored at least one goal, while seven skaters finished with at least three points (led by Quinn Hughes with six).

And while the Canucks are +151 underdogs to advance to the Western Conference semifinals, they do have one big thing working in their favor. Vancouver boasted the No. 4 power play in the NHL during the regular season (24.2 percent) and kept that success going against the Wild, scoring on four of their 19 chances for a 21.1 percent conversion rate.

St. Louis News & Notes

The Blues averaged better than 3.1 goals per game in the regular season, but that didn’t do them much good in the restart as they tallied just six times in losses to Colorado, Vegas and Dallas – and four of those goals came in a 6-4 setback to the Golden Knights. Only four players managed to score for the Blues, and one of them was a defenseman (Colton Parayko had a pair of goals).

St. Louis might also have a decision to make regarding its goaltending, with Jake Allen emphatically outplaying regular starter Jordan Binnington in the round-robin seeding stage. Allen allowed just one goal on 38 shots in regulation and overtime in a 2-1 shootout loss to the Stars, while Binnington was torched for eight goals in his two starts with an .895 save percentage.

Betting Pick: Canucks +125

You can’t ignore how well Vancouver played against Minnesota – and how much the Blues offense struggled. Look for the Canucks to get off to the better start.

Shark Bites
  • Vancouver is 5-10 in its last 15 games vs St. Louis.
  • Canucks F J.T. Miller had 3 goals vs St. Louis this season.
  • The OVER is 11-4 in Vancouver’s last 15 games.