Columbus Blue Jackets vs. Washington Capitals Free Prediction

The Columbus Blue Jackets at Capital One Arena in Game 2 of the postseason’s first round. The first puck will drop at 7:30 p.m. ET on Sunday, April 15, and fans at home are able to catch it live on NBC Sports Network.

Columbus Blue Jackets vs. Washington Capitals Odds

Washington (-155) is currently favored over Columbus (+135), and the oddsmakers have set the Over/Under (O/U) at 6 goals. The odds for betting the total stand at -125 for the under and +105 for the over.

The Capitals are 49-34 straight up (SU) and have earned 9.4 units for moneyline bettors this year. That winning percentage, the best in the Metropolitan Division in this young season, is a regression from the 55-27 record that the team posted during last years regular season campaign. Through 83 regular season contests, 47 of its games have gone over the total, while 34 have gone under and just two have pushed. The team is 28-14 SU at home this season.

Washington has converted on 22.8 percent of its power play chances this season, a mark that’s good enough for seventh-best in the league. On the other hand, its penalty kill is rated 16th overall, and it’s successfully killed off 79.9 percent of all penalties.

Washington, as a collective unit, has been called for penalties 4.0 times per game overall this season, and 3.0 per game over its last five matchups home outings. The teams had to stave off opposition power plays for just 7.6 minutes per game over its last 10 matchups, in total.

Averaging 27.7 saves per game with a .907 save percentage, Braden Holtby (34-20-4) has been the primary option in goal for the Capitals this year. If head coach Barry Trotz decides to give him the night off, however, the team might go with Philipp Grubauer (15-21-21 record, .921 save percentage, 2.39 goals against average).

Alex Ovechkin and Evgeny Kuznetsov will both lead the offensive attack for the Capitals. Ovechkin (87 points) has tallied 49 goals and 38 assists and has recorded multiple points 24 times this year. Kuznetsov has 29 goals and 56 assists to his credit and has recorded a point in 50 games.

Columbus is 46-37 straight up (SU) and has netted 1.4 units for moneyline bettors this season. Through 83 regular season contests, 42 of its games have gone over the total, while 40 have gone under and just one has pushed. As a road team, Columbus is 20-22 SU.

Columbus has converted on just 17.6 percent of its power play opportunities this season, a figure that’s ranked 25th in the NHL. On the other hand, its penalty kill unit is ranked 27th overall and it’s successfully killed off 75.8 percent of all penalties.

Columbus players have been penalized only 3.1 times per game in total this season, and 3.8 per game over their last five match ups. The teams been forced to kill penalties 11.0 minutes per game over their last five road outings.

Sergei Bobrovsky (2.43 goals against average and .920 save percentage) has been the main option in goal for Columbus. Bobrovsky is averaging 28.2 saves per game and has 38 wins, 28 losses, and six overtime losses to his credit.

Artemi Panarin (28 goals, 57 assists) has been one of the primary playmakers on offense for the visiting Blue Jackets.

Columbus Blue Jackets vs. Washington Capitals Free Picks

Free NHL Tip: SU Winner – Blue Jackets, O/U – Under

Betting Trends

  • The over has hit in four of Washington’s last five games.
  • Columbus has attempted 33.6 shots per contest overall this season (the second-most in the NHL), and 31.2 in its last 10 games.
  • Penalties and power plays may have a critical role in tonight’s matchup. The Blue Jackets are 20-17 in games where they serve fewer penalty minutes than their opponent and 39-29 when they serve fewer than 10 total penalty minutes. The Capitals are 16-11 when they serve fewer penalty minutes than the opposition and 28-18 when they’re in the box for less than 10 minutes.
  • Washington is ranked 14th overall with 7.2 takeaways per game. That figures trended higher lately, as the team has averaged 7.8 takeaways over its last 10 games and 8.4 takeaways over its last five.
  • Columbus is ranked 12th in the league with 7.6 takeaways per game. That figure has trended upward, as it has averaged 8.2 takeaways over its last 10 games and 8.2 takeaways over its last five.