The Vancouver Canucks start off their four-game road trip at Madison Square Garden as they take on the New York Rangers. The Canucks come into this game following a whopping 7-1 win over the Calgary Flames on Thursday as they are not quite out of playoff contention just yet. The Rangers return home for their third game in four nights after a 1-0 shutout loss yesterday to the Pittsburgh Penguins as they also lost the second place seed in their division. Both teams are fighting for better standing positions as it’s time to continue our NHL odds series with a Canucks-Rangers prediction and pick.

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Here are the Canucks-Rangers NHL Odds, Courtesy of FanDuel

NHL Odds: Canucks-Rangers Odds

Vancouver Canucks: +1.5 (-245) (+115 ML)

New York Rangers: -1.5 (+194) (-138 ML)

Over: 5.5 (-122)

Under: 5.5 (+100)

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Why The Canucks Can Cover The Spread/Win

After struggling to get something going in the month of January, the Vancouver Canucks have started to see a mini-surge as of late. They’re currently outside of the playoff bubble, but certainly not out. The final wild card position is looking to be a heads-on race between the Oilers, Ducks, Stars, and Canucks. After extinguishing a red-hot Flames team (pun intended) on Thursday, the Canucks have all the momentum they need to make a run for the playoffs. Starting goaltender Thatcher Demko has been steady as of late, but has been inconsistent on the road, giving up at least four goals in four of his past eight road appearances. But he will look to get the start tonight as he is allowing 2.61 goals per game with a .917 save percentage on the season. Demko will be leaned on pretty heavily against this hungry Rangers team.

Why The Rangers Can Cover The Spread/Win

The New York Rangers have fallen back down to third in the Metropolitan Division as they lost to the Pittsburgh Penguins yesterday. Luckily for them, the Eastern Conference is pretty much wrapped up in terms of who is going to make the playoffs and who isn’t; but you never know what could happen. The Rangers start a quick three-game homestand tonight and are hungry for the two points that could potentially propel them back into second place.

Most of their season’s success can be credited towards their goaltender and Vezina Trophy favorite, Igor Shesterkin. However, because he played last night, it’s assumed that he’ll sit on the bench, giving the starting roll to Alexandar Georgiev. Unlike his fellow goaltending teammate, Georgiev hasn’t been so steady, allowing 2.99 goals against per game with an .898 save percentage. He’ll look to stop a hot Canucks team tonight and get a notch in the win column.

Final Canucks-Rangers Prediction & Pick

Both teams, specifically the Rangers, seem to have strived to hit the under total all year long. The Canucks are 28-23-2 when it comes to the under (55%) while the Rangers are 33-17-2 when covering the under (66%). In fact, the last time these teams played each other was in early November when the Canucks won 3-2 in overtime. The Rangers are a better team overall, but they’re also about to play their third game in four days and the team has to be winded. I like the Under 5.5, especially being in plus money (+100), but that half-point still has me worried. In FanDuel, there’s an option to take an alternative total, and I like the first option at Under 6 (-126). I don’t love the odds, but I’m paying for that half of a point to just feel a little bit safer about the pick.

Final Canucks-Rangers Prediction and Pick: Alternative Total #1 – Under 6 (-126)