Welcome back to another day of NHL Predictions. Each day, Last Word on Hockey takes a look at the games that are happening and gives our predictions for each one. Breaking down head-to-head and other factors that may play in. We also have a featured game of the day, which is considered must-watch TV. Today’s featured game is the Vancouver Canucks vs Vegas Golden Knights.
NHL Predictions with Vancouver Canucks vs Vegas Golden Knights
Philadelphia Flyers vs Dallas Stars
Head-to-Head: Flyers 0 – 0 Stars
The Philadelphia Flyers are coming off a hard-fought, come-from-behind win on the road last night against the Carolina Hurricanes. The Flyers were outclassed offensively but Carter Hart stood his ground in stopping 39 shots to aid his team in the victory. The Flyers have a quick turn around and head to Arlington, Texas where they get a matchup against a Dallas Stars team that is still trying to find their way.
Dallas head coach Rick Bowness ripped into his team after a 6-3 loss to Vancouver last week. He was blunt with his take on the team’s performance saying “we make it easy for the other team to win” and “we are not consistent enough”. The Stars failed to be inspired to turn things around after their coach’s harsh evaluation, as they took a home loss to the Nashville Predators three nights later. This matchup against the Flyers is only their second game in a week, so there’s been lots of time for Bowness’s club to figure things out in practice. Dallas is desperate for a win and they can grind out a win against a tired Flyers squad.
Prediction: Stars win 3-2
Arizona Coyotes vs Nashville Predators
Head-to-Head: Coyotes 0 – 0 Predators
The Nashville Predators are rolling right now. The Preds are finally back home after a lengthy but extremely successful, six-game road trip. The Predators collected points in five of their six games, going 4-1-1, and now get back to their home rink to feast on a sorry-looking Arizona team.
The Coyotes are playing the second of their back-to-back tonight. They came up short against the equally struggling Chicago Blackhawks, 2-1. The Coyotes couldn’t generate much offence, as they only mustered 23 shots on goal, most of which weren’t high-quality chances. Now I predicted the Coyotes’ first win of the season but I don’t think I’ll test Lady Luck twice. Stick with the hot hand in this one.
Prediction: Nashville wins 4-1
San Jose Sharks vs Colorado Avalanche
Head-to-Head: Sharks 0 – 0 Avalanche
The Sharks and Avalanche have treated us to some highly entertaining hockey over the years. An unlikely rivalry that was first formed in those early 2000’s playoff battles was recently revitalized by a 2019 playoff bout. With many thinking the rivalry would be lopsided this year due to the opposite directions these clubs were heading, now seems to be marquee hockey.
The Sharks are having themselves an unexpected start to their season. Backed by incredible goaltending, San Jose has rattled off seven wins and is outpacing Colorado in the standings.
Their first matchup of the season has San Jose on the road against the Avalanche who are still trying to find their stride this season. Colorado looks to keep the momentum going after their 7-1 thrashing of Vancouver the other night.
Go with the home team for the first edition of this series.
Prediction: Colorado wins 4-3 in overtime
Minnosota Wild vs Seattle Kraken
Head-to-Head: Wild 0 – 1 Kraken
This is a battle of two teams heading in different directions. The Kraken has not had the start most fans had hoped but what most pundits had predicted. Seattle is still going through the growing pains of being a new franchise in the NHL. They are trending down with only two wins in their last seven games. Of those wins though, one was against this very Wild team.
Minnesota is in the midst of a nice five-game stretch. They have four wins and young Kirill Kaprizov has found the back of the net three times in that span. Minnesota is looking more and more complete as a team, as the season progresses. I don’t think they’ll allow themselves to have a hiccup here on the road against a team they match up very well against.
Prediction: Minnesota wins 5-2
Vancouver Canucks vs Vegas Golden Knights
Head-to-Head: Canucks 0 – 0 Golden Knights
Our feature late-night game is a battle between the Canucks and the Golden Knights. This is the first meeting between the teams this season and they won’t face each other again until April where they will have three games against one another over nine days. Both teams will be hoping that there will be serious playoff implications in those games by the time they get there.
But hope can only get you so far. Especially for the Canucks who are on the verge of letting this season get away from them. Vancouver has lost six of their last eight and that run was capped by an embarrassing and ugly 7-1 loss to the Colorado Avalanche. Canucks fans were optimistic that last season’s struggles were just due to covid issues. The thought was that with some normalcy to this season they could leave that all behind and thrive with the young core they have to lead this roster. Unfortunately, they can’t hide behind their problems with the excuse of Covid. There are holes in their game and opponents are exposing them on a nightly basis.
There will be no break for Vancouver either as they fly to Vegas to take on a Golden Knights team that has flipped the script on their early-season woes. After starting the year with a 1-3 record, they have now gone 7-3 in their last 10 games. After having Chandler Stephenson step up in the absence of star players Mark Stone and Max Pacioretty due to injury, Jonathan Marchessault has taken the helm and led the team with seven points in his last five games. Vegas is always dominant at home.
Prediction: Vegas wins 5-2