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 Calgary Flames vs Vancouver Canucks.
NHL Predictions Including Calgary Flames vs Vancouver Canucks
Dallas Stars vs Nashville Predators
Head-to-Head: Stars 1-1 Predators
On paper, this looks like a tough matchup for the Dallas Stars. They are on the second half of a back-to-back, with travel and are on the road. In their way is a Nashville Predators team that just beat the Florida Panthers… at home. The Predators were only the fourth team to do that this season.
The Predators are also lead by a force in all aspects of the game. Juuse Saros has been excellent in net with a 24-15-3 record and a .923 save percentage. On the blueline, Roman Josi is on pace for one of the best seasons of his career averaging over 25 minutes of icetime a night, with 53 points in 49 games played. Up front, youngster Tanner Jeannot has given the team quite the pop with 17 goals, 31 points and a whopping 169 hits. This mix has created quite the balanced attack for Nashville.
The Stars will lean on Joe Pavelski, who currently leads the team in scoring with 53 points, to lead their counterpunch. His steady presence, plus the momentum from last night’s win against the Winnipeg Jets, will be enough to keep it close, but the Predators should still be able to pull away.
Prediction: Predators win 3-2
Boston Bruins vs Seattle Kraken
Head-to-Head: Bruins 1-0 Kraken
This will be the first trip to Seattle for the Boston Bruins, after beating the Kraken back at home on February 1st. The Bruins will walk in winners of their last two, including a big 5-1 win over the Colorado Avalanche. The Bruins certainly have some momentum now as they continue to gain separation in an Eastern Conference Wild Card race that is looking more and more over by the day.
The Kraken haven’t been nearly as fortunate as of late. They’ve love five in a row and eight of their last 10 as they continue to grind away in their inaugural season. At this point, the Kraken are playing more or less for draft positioning and a chance to showcase some of their trade chips as the deadline draws nearer.
The Bruins should win this one easy.
Predictions: Bruins win 4-1
New York Islanders vs San Jose Sharks
Head-to-Head: Islanders 0-1 Sharks
The San Jose Sharks enter tonight’s game on a seven game losing streak. Over their last 10, they are a troubling 1-5-4. That slump has taken a serious bite out of their playoff chances as they fall further and further behind in the Western Conference race, currently sitting seventh in the Pacific Division. They’ll be desperate for a win on home ice.
The Islanders have been fighting an uphill battle from the start of the season. Their offence has struggled to score goals all year which has held them back tremendously. Their team averages only 2.7 goals against per game, good for fifth in the league, but that just demonstrates how mediocre their offence has been in return. It’s lead to an underwhelming 19-20-7 record on the year.
Both of these teams need the two points, but the Sharks are more desperate and are at home. They’ll snap their skid.
Prediction: Sharks win 5-3
Calgary Flames vs Vancouver Canucks
Head-to-Head: Flames 1-0 Canucks
A perfect 10-0. That’s the streak that the Calgary Flames currently find themselves on amid their red hot play. Their team has looked more or less incredible over this stretch, and they’ve shown no signs of stopping. Jacob Markstrom has been outstanding for Calgary with eight shutouts on the year, adding to his 23-10-5 record and .928 save percentage. He is the backbone for the Flames’ stifling defence, which currently sits first in the league in goals against per game.
The Vancouver Canucks aren’t quite as good as that, but they have been better of late. They are 6-3-1 in their last 10, but find themselves in a win/loss/win/loss pattern that they can’t quite get out of. It’s why they’ve struggled to gain ground in the Pacific and soon may find themselves as sellers at the deadline.
For tonight’s game, it’s hard to bet against the Flames. They just beat the Canucks 1-0 on January 29th and that was the win that kickstarted their entire streak in the first place. The Canucks might just be able to give the Flames a scare in extra time, but Calgary keeps the magic alive.
Prediction: Flames win 3-2 (OT)