While there are only 5 games on tonight, they are 5 of the best, and as always, we’ve got each game covered in detail below. So kick your feet up, have a read through our NHL picks, and brace yourself for another great night of ice hockey
Vancouver Canucks @ Montreal Canadiens – 7.00 PM EDT
The Canucks made it 3 in a row with a shootout win over the Senators on Wednesday, it was the second game of a 2 match series in Ottawa, both of which had to be decided past regulation time.
The game on Wednesday played out weirdly similar to the previous one, with the Canucks taking the lead early and going into the 2nd term 2-0 up, only for the Senators to score in both the remaining terms to send the game to overtime.
The Canucks were outshot by the Senators in each game, luckily Thatcher Demko was at his best, making 74 saves across the 2 games, and saved all 4 shootout attempts that came his way.
It was a massive win for the Canucks who find themselves just 2 points away from the Canadiens in 4th, and boast the best record in the league over the last 10 games (7-3-0).
— Vancouver #Canucks (@Canucks) March 18, 2021
The Canadiens lost to the Jets on Wednesday after beating them two days earlier, it was their final game of a 6 match roadtrip, coming home with just 2 wins.
The game went to overtime after the Canadiens mounted a comeback, coming back from 3-1 down at the start of the third with goals from Brendan Gallagher and Tyler Toffoli.
They failed to overcome their overtime demons though, conceding a goal within the 1st minute to continue their awful record in added time, yet to get a win from 8 overtime situations.
Calgary Flames @ Toronto Maple Leafs – 7.00 PM EDT
The Flames had their 3 win streak halted by a well oiled Edmonton on Wednesday, having beaten them two days earlier the blowout defeat was surprising.
They came out the gate looking worse than the previous game, conceding 3 goals before scoring their first. Followed by a 3rd term which saw the Oilers score 4 goals in a 7 minute window, the Flames worst period of the season.
They now travel to Toronto to face the Maple Leafs, the teams have met on 4 occasions this season, the Flames have won just 1 game from those 4.
If there were a good time to face the Maple Leafs this season it would be now, as they are experiencing their worst slump in form all season.
They have lost more games in the last 6 played than they had previously lost all year with just 1 win and 5 losses, compared to 4 losses from the previous 24.
A most recent defeat away to the Senators epitomised their dip in quality, losing 4-3 to the bottom place side, and were down 4-1 late into the third term.
Zach Hyman stood out in the defeat though, having a hand in all 3 of the Leafs goals, scoring 2 and assisting another to bring his total to 18 points for the season.
New York Rangers @ Washington Capitals – 7.00 PM EDT
The Rangers come into this game with sky high confidence after embarrassing the Philadelphia Flyers by a whopping 9 goals to nil, one of the biggest shutout wins of the decade.
The blowout victory came from nowhere, the two had played just days before with the Flyers getting a 5-4 win in a tight match, and the Rangers were playing without any coaching staff present due to Covid protocols.
After scoring 2 in the first, 7 of the 9 goals were scored in the games’ second term, just two shy of the NHL record for goals scored in a period.
Found our pot of goals.
— New York Rangers (@NYRangers) March 18, 2021
Mika Zibanejad contributed to 6 of them, with a hat trick of both goals and assists, becoming just the NHL’s second player to score 6 points in a single term.
It is not just the Rangers who come into this game on a high, the Capitals picked up their 6th straight win on Tuesday, doing so against the Islanders who had won their last 8 games straight at the time.
The win took the Caps to the top of the table, tied for points with the Islanders on 42 but with 2 extra games in hand over them. The Capitals have played the Rangers twice this season, once at home and once away, losing on both occasions with an aggregate score of 8-3.
St Louis Blues @ San Jose Sharks – 9.00 PM EDT
The Blues’ form slump continued on Wednesday as they lost a season high 5th consecutive game to the Kings.
With just 4 wins from the last 10 games the Blues have seen themselves slip down to 4th place on the West Division table, just 3 points from 5th.
Making just 20 shots for the game, almost 10 less than their average, the Blues were kept to just 1 goal for the second game in a row while the Kings put 4 goals past them.
They will play their next 4 games away from home where they have been characteristically stronger this season, with a road record of 10-3-2.
The Blues and Sharks have met 6 times already this season, and the points have been evenly distributed, winning 3 games a piece, two of those games have been played in San Jose with both teams also winning a game each.
The Sharks enter this game following straight defeats to the Golden Knights in Las Vegas, they put up a good fight in both matches against the division’s top team, losing by just a goal in each game.
They looked like they might take all the points on Wednesday, leading 3-1 at the end of the 2nd period, however, the Knights were too much for them in the third, scoring 4 goals to retake the lead.
The last time the Sharks hosted the Blues they got the win, but they still have a very weak home record of just 3 from 9 games.
Vegas Golden Knights @ Los Angeles Kings – 10.00 PM EDT
The Golden Knights continued their winning ways with a 5-4 victory over the Sharks, extending their streak to 4 games and still sitting in 1st place in the West.
They remain undefeated over the Sharks from 5 games this season, however, it didn’t come without a sweat for the Knights as they entered the game’s final term down 3-1.
As we have seen them do on multiple occasions this season, the Knights put on a dominant third period, scoring 4 goals back to back to restore the lead they lost in the second term.
The Knights travel to Los Angeles for the next 2 games with the Kings who they have only faced twice this season, both games took place in Vegas and both were won by the Knights.
— Vegas Golden Knights (@GoldenKnights) March 18, 2021
The Kings returned home on Wednesday to face the Blues after a disappointing road trip saw them claim just 3 points from a potential 8.
They got up over the Blues by an impressive 4-1, bringing their home record to 5-3-4 and giving them a bit of confidence between a tough fixture against the division’s best.
There were multiple 2 point scorers in their win against the Blues, with Moore, Doughty, and Anderson-Dolan all contributing double points.
Anze Kopitar helped tee up Drew Doughty for the first goal, and put the nail in the coffin when he scored a goal of his own towards the end of the 3rd, the captain is leading the team for points this season with 34.
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*Odds and spreads correct at time of publication, courtesy of Bet365.