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NHL Free Pick: Sabres vs. Canucks Betting Lines & Preview

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Weekly NHL Betting action sees the Buffalo Sabres taking on the Vancouver Canucks January 30 at Rogers Arena. Cappers Picks provides free NHL handicapping tips all season long.

The Vancouver Canucks will try to end a mini-two game losing streak on Friday night and it appears they may have gotten a gift from the scheduling Gods.

Daily NHL Hockey Odds

Buffalo (14-31-2-1) at Vancouver (26-17-2-1)
When: 10:00 PM ET, Friday, January 30, 2015
Where: Rogers Arena, Vancouver, British Columbia
Broadcast: NHLN-US, MSG-B, BELL TV, SNP
Buffalo Sabres +1½ +105 +291 Ov 5 -120
Vancouver Canucks -1½ -125 -333 Un 5 +109
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Their opposition? The Buffalo Sabres who have lost 13 straight games ahead of Friday night’s affair and are 1-16-1 in their last 18 games – ugly. The biggest storyline ahead of the game however is Ryan Miller who will start against his former team – the one that he backstopped for nine years.

The Buffalo Sabres are a bad team – period. Case in point – they were thoroughly outplayed last night in Edmonton – the second worst team in the NHL. Absolutely nothing is working in Buffalo – the team is averaging a league-low 1.76 goals per game while surrendering an ugly 3.53 goals per game.

We’ll start with the defense and goaltending that has been dreadful during Buffalo’s 13 game losing streak. Thursday night’s starter Jhonas Enroth has lost eight straight contests with a 4.66 GAA while Buffalo’s other keeper Michal Neuvirth is also riding an eight game losing streak. His GAA over that span is 4.10. Translation – the Sabres have no reliable #1 that can or will keep them in games right now. The starter for Friday hasn’t been named but either way, it appears as though Buffalo is in trouble between the pipes.

Buffalo’s offense isn’t likely to bail them out either on Friday night – they scored just twice against a terrible defensive team in Edmonton and are averaging just 1.76 goals per game on the year. There are some Sabres that have been OK offensively lately however – Tyler Ennis has four points in three games, Christ Stewart has four points in four games and Nikita Zadarov and Brian Gionta each have two points in their last two games.

Hey – I had to say something positive OK – there it is!

The Vancouver Canucks have been struggling lately – particularly in the offensive zone. A shutout loss Tuesday against Anaheim is proof. The team has now scored one goal or less in five of their last eight games. The power play hasn’t hit the board in the last nine games and absolutely no Canucks have stood out lately in the offensive zone.

You can bet that Vancouver will bring their best defensive effort on Friday ahead of Ryan Miller however – Miller has given the Canucks a chance to win each and every night despite the issues in the offensive zone. Miller allowed four goals on 24 shots against the Ducks – his worst effort in quite some time. He had gone 7-2-1 with a terrific 1.40 GAA prior to his current two game losing streak.

Miller will be eager to snap a personal mini-skid and to bring his best against his former team.

NHL Gambling Trends

• BUF are 9-47 in their last 56 road games.
• Under is 5-1-2 in BUF last 8 vs. Pacific.
• Over is 7-2-2 in BUF last 11 road games.
• VAN are 2-6 in their last 8 vs. Atlantic.
• Under is 18-7-1 in VAN last 26 overall.
• Home team is 11-3-1 in the last 15 meetings.

Buffalo has lost 13 straight games on the road and 13 straight games on the road – it is unlikely they snap that skid Friday. But there is ZERO value on the Moneyline ahead of this game – my play is the Spread.

NHL Betting 4* Free Play

I’m taking Vancouver -1 1/2 – I think they win this game 3-1.

Vancouver Canucks -1 1/2 (-125)

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