On a Sunday where there are just six games on the schedule, we look at two games that could make or break the Winnipeg Jets and Vancouver Canucks’ seasons.
Chicago Blackhawks (+110) vs Winnipeg Jets (-135)
The Jets sit on the cusp of playoff contention but will need to start winning games now. They travel to meet the Chicago Blackhawks in the second game after the team traded away Brandon Hagel to likely signal the rebuild. The Jets have played better than average hockey of late, winning four of the last six games, while the Blackhawks have lost five of the past seven games.
This game for the Jets could also make or break their season, as they are rumoured to be trying to trade Andrew Copp, Paul Stastny, and Brendan Dillon. A win tonight could make them rethink their strategy, but the team could also win games without these players.
Marc-Andre Fleury gets the start after backup Kevin Lankinen started yesterday, so the Blackhawks come into tonight on the second half of a back-to-back and may be a bit tired. Take the Jets, but it should be a close matchup.
Vancouver Canucks (-200) vs Buffalo Sabres (+170)
The Canucks have climbed their way out of the depths of the league after Bruce Boudreau took over as head coach. They fought their way back to within a point of the Vegas Golden Knights for the second wild card spot before dropping four of the last five games. On a night where all the teams ahead of them in the standings won, they lost in regulation to the Detroit Red Wings, dropping their playoff chances by over 10 percent.
The Canucks have another easy matchup in the Buffalo Sabres after they were steamrolled by the division-leading Calgary Flames 5-2 last night. In the second game of a back-to-back, there is a chance the Canucks go with Jaroslav Halak in net. But if they are serious about giving themselves a chance, they will go with Thatcher Demko for the second night in a row.
This game looks like a make or break for the Canucks’ season on the last day before the trade deadline against the Sabres who have surprisingly won three of their last four games. This game will very likely hit the over (O6, -105) and the Sabres have really good odds for how they’ve played recently. But I would go with the Canucks.
Odds via Yahoo and BetMGM.