Buffalo Sabres vs. Nashville Predators Matchup 3/31/18, paragraph: [

Jose VasquezArticles, Hockey, NHL

Bridgestone Arena will be the site for an East-West tilt as the Nashville Predators take the ice against the visiting Buffalo Sabres. It’s the final time that these two clubs will go at it in the regular season. Fox Sports Tennesse will broadcast the matchup, and the puck drops at 8 p.m. ET on Saturday, March 31.

Buffalo Sabres at Nashville Predators Odds

Nashville (-330) is currently the favorite over Buffalo (+270), and the Over/Under (O/U) is set at 6 goals (-115 for the over, -105 for the under).

Nashville is 50-27 straight up (SU) and has earned moneyline bettors 15.5 units this year. That winning percentage, ranked second in the NHL in this young season, is an improvement over the 41-41 record from the 2016-17 season campaign. Of the teams 77 games this season, 38 have gone over the total, while another 38 have gone under and just one has pushed. The teams 27-12 SU at home this year.

The Predators have converted on 19.9 percent of their power play chances this year, a mark that’s right around league average. On the other hand, their penalty kill is rated sixth overall, and they’ve successfully killed off 82.7 percent of all penalties.

As a collective unit, the Predators have been penalized 4.5 times per game overall this season, 4.8 per game over their past five games total, and 4.8 per game over their last five at home. The teams had to kill penalties for 9.6 minutes per contest over their last five home games.

Averaging 29.1 saves per game with a .929 save percentage, Pekka Rinne (41 wins, 15 losses, and four OT losses) has been the primary option in goal for Nashville this year. If Nashville decides to give him the night off, however, head coach Peter Laviolette could turn to Juuse Saros (9-13-13 record, .925 save percentage, 2.46 goals against average).

The Preds will continue to lean on the offensive production out of Viktor Arvidsson and Filip Forsberg. Arvidsson (60 points) has produced 29 goals and 31 assists and has recorded two or more points 17 times this year. Forsberg has 21 goals and 37 assists to his name and has recorded a point in 39 contests.

On the other side of the ice, Buffalo is 24-53 straight up (SU) and has lost 17.9 units for bettors taking the moneyline this year. A total of 38 of its outings have gone under the total, while 34 have gone over and just five have pushed. The Sabres are 13-24 SU as the visiting team this season.

The Sabres have converted on just 17.2 percent of their power play opportunities this season, a figure that’s ranked 23rd in the NHL. On the other hand, its penalty kill unit is ranked 22nd overall and it’s successfully killed off 78.3 percent of all opponent power plays.

Buffalo’s skaters have been whistled for penalties 3.5 times per game in total this season, and 2.8 per game over their past ten games. The teams had to stave off opponent power plays just 6.2 minutes per game over their last 10 outings.

Robin Lehner (26.7 saves per game) has been the primary option in goal for Buffalo. Lehner has 14 wins, 39 losses, and nine OT losses to his credit, while registering a .908 save percentage and 3.01 goals against average this year.

Jack Eichel (25 goals, 32 assists) and Ryan O’Reilly (21 goals, 33 assists) have been the top playmakers for Buffalo and will lead the offensive attack for the visiting Sabres.

Buffalo Sabres at Nashville Predators Free Picks

NHL Tip: SU Winner – Predators, O/U – Under

Betting Notes

  • Three of Nashville’s last ten games have gone to a shootout. The team is 1-2 in those games and 6-7 overall in shootouts this season.
  • The total has gone over in three of Nashville’s last five outings.
  • Over Buffalo’s last ten games, seven of them have been decided by two or more goals (the team is 1-6 in those games).