All Canadian Matchup In Winnipeg Headlines Saturday Action
Can Toronto Finish Off Their Road Trip With A .500 Record?
Saturday night brings the conclusion to a tough four-game stretch for the Leafs that saw them navigate the rough waters in California before playing in St Louis tonight.
Toronto has gone 1-2 SU so far on this trip after a very sluggish start in L.A on back-to-back nights Thursday gave the Leafs another loss. St Louis might not be located in California, but they are built in a similar fashion to those teams with their big, physical brand of hockey and will look to take a page out of L.A's and San Jose's success vs Toronto earlier this week.
Although Toronto fell short in L.A on Thursday, there were plenty of good things to take away from their effort in the final 30 minutes of that contest. Toronto really started to establish their speed and skill in the 2nd half of that game and will look to do the same against the Blues. As +115 road underdogs vs St Louis, Toronto is definitely a live underdog for a victory tonight.
All Canadian Showdown In Winnipeg
Montreal heads to Winnipeg tonight as a slight road underdog and they look to halt the Jets three-game winning streak. The Habs have had no shortage of drama already in this young season, and with everyone wondering "what's wrong with Carey Price" at the moment, Montreal's drama isn't likely to go away any time soon. A win against a Winnipeg on Saturday night could go a long way in quieting that noise down for at least a few days though.
Winnipeg's concerns deal with who they'll start in net as all 7 of Winnipeg's wins this year have come with Connor Hellebuyck between the pipes. The Jets would love to get much more from Steve Mason if he ends up getting the nod, but with this game sandwiched between a home-and-home against division rival Dallas, some tough decisions have to be made. The sandwich spot also may make the Jets a good fade here, especially if Mason does indeed get the start.
Can Vancouver Start Scoring Again?
The Canucks are in a good situational spot on Saturday evening as they host a tired Pittsburgh Penguins team concluding a five-game road trip that saw the last four contests take them through Western Canada. Focus and energy will be a concern for the Penguins here - especially against a Vancouver team they should dominate on paper - but in order for Vancouver to have a chance at the upset, they'll need to find their offense again.
Vancouver has lost two in a row and have scored a grand total of one goal in those games. The Canucks aren't exactly loaded with scorers up front, but much of their success earlier this year came because they were putting 3+ goals across the line. In order to beat a team like the Penguins, the Canucks offense better show up or this Penguins team could blow them out in a hurry.
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