Jets vs. Canucks: Free Picks, Odds & Predictions

Jets vs Canucks NHL week 18
Winnipeg vs. Vancouver, Bell MTS Place

The Winnipeg Jets need to desperately stop their slide as their grasp on third place in the North Division is slipping. The Jets have lost nine of their last 10 games and now have just two games left to avoid facing Toronto in the first-round of the playoffs. The Vancouver Canucks have faced a lot of adversity this season, and are trying to end this season with some positive momentum despite being eliminated from playoff contention.

Free Picks

Kyle Connor went seven straight games without a goal until he scored the only goal in Monday’s loss to Vancouver. He is clearly the Jets’ best scorer and he should play with more confidence after breaking out of his slump with a goal Monday. With that goal, Connor now has two goals and two assists this season against Vancouver, all of which have come in Winnipeg. I was shocked at the meager +125 odds at the hockey betting sites in New Jersey, but he is always going to be among the most likely goal scorers for the Jets this season.

KYLE CONNOR SCORES GOAL

Over the last 10 games, Winnipeg has gone 1-9-0 and scored two goals or fewer seven times. The Canucks have done the same thing five times in their last 11 games as they have stumbled to a 3-8-0 record in that span. Therefore, it’s reasonable to suspect a low-scoring game despite the struggles for both teams to win games. Exactly half of the eight previous contests this season between the Jets and Canucks featured four goals or fewer, so it’s not an unreasonable guess as well. The NHL betting sites in New Jersey posted +295 odds on four goals or fewer being scored, so I’ll take the educated chance for such a strong payout.

UNDER 4.5 TOTAL GOALS

I needed to find some bet that provided value on the Jets winning and this was the best of the bunch. The +118 odds at the legal sports betting sites in New Jersey, it isn’t going to be the most profitable, but the Jets are still heavy favorites despite their recent form. Winnipeg has won two-thirds of its games in which it has scored first and are 10-16-1 when conceding first this season. Surprisingly, the Jets start very slowly at home this season, but I would expect someone to light a fire under them with so much at stake in Tuesday’s game. So though I don’t think it’ll be pretty, I do think Winnipeg scores first and holds on to win against Vancouver.

WINNIPEG JETS SCORE FIRST AND WIN

Best Odds

Winnipeg Vancouver
888Sport
-159 +130
FanDuel
-172 +144
BetMGM
-165 +140

Statistics

Head to Head

This is the ninth and final matchup of the year between Winnipeg and Vancouver after the Jets won five of the first eight games between the teams despite the Canucks’ win Monday night.

Stats

  • It’s not just the Jets are 1-9 in their last 10 games, but they have been outplayed badly during that stretch. Winnipeg has scored one goal or fewer six times over the last 10 games while allowing 3.5 goals per game. Making matters worse is Winnipeg is outshooting teams over the last 10 games and still being outscored by more than a 2:1 ratio. The power play has gone cold over the same span with just two goals in 27 opportunities on the man advantage while allowing seven power-play goals on 29 chances on the penalty kill.
  • There was hope in Vancouver after the Canucks returned from their extended COVID-19-related hiatus to sweep a two-game set with Toronto. However, the Canucks are 3-8-0 since those two victories and have allowed at least four goals in six of those games. In fact, the Canuck’s 3-1 win Monday night over Winnipeg was the first time since mid-March that they allowed one goal or fewer in a game.
  • Blake Wheeler had a six-game point streak snapped in Monday’s loss to Vancouver, during which he scored three goals and assisted on four others. He has points in 13 of his last 17 games now with five goals and nine assists over that span. However, much like the Jets, Wheeler’s defense has been lacking as he is -9 over that span to move his season plus/minus rating to a team-worst -23.
  • Quinn Hughes continues to be an offensive juggernaut for the Canucks with 33 assists and 36 points in 50 games for Vancouver. However, Hughes has been a defensive liablity as well this season with a team-worst -24 plus/minus rating. You need to go back to that second win against Toronto out of the hiatus to find the last time Hughes recorded a point and had a positive plus/minus rating in the same game.

Our Prediction for Winnipeg vs. Vancouver

Winnipeg Jets to win

Both of these teams have lost far more than they have won in recent weeks, so I’ll bet on the better team getting the job done Tuesday. The Winnipeg Jets have lost nine of their last 10 games and need to find their game ahead of the playoffs while the Vancouver Canucks beat the Jets on Monday for their second win in the last nine contests. I can’t expect the Canucks to be able to replicate that performance on Tuesday, especially with the Jets being an angry, desperate hockey team looking for a little rhythm heading into the playoffs. It won’t be pretty, but I’ll bet on the Jets to get the job done despite their recent form.

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Josh Walfish is an award-winning journalist who has been covering college and professional sports in the United States. He holds a journalism degree from Northwestern University and his work has appeared in the Miami Herald, Chicago Sun-Times and Providence Journal. He most recently chronicled the UMass hockey teams rise to prominence over the last two years for the local newspaper

All Reviews by Josh Walfish

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