Ottawa Senators at Columbus Blue Jackets Matchup Preview

Nationwide Arena will be the site for an Eastern Conference matchup as the Columbus Blue Jackets take the ice against the visiting Ottawa Senators. It’s the third and last time that these two clubs will go at it in the regular season. The opening face-off is at 7 p.m. ET on Saturday, March 17, and you will be able to catch it live on CiTV.

Ottawa Senators vs. Columbus Blue Jackets Odds

Ottawa (+195) is currently the underdog to Columbus (-235) and the Over/Under (O/U) has been set at 6 goals (-115 for the over, -105 for the under).

Columbus is 38-33 straight up (SU) and has lost 1.6 units for moneyline bettors this year. That winning percentage, the third-best in the Metropolitan Division so far in the early season, is a slide from what the team managed during the 2016-17 season (50-32). Out of the teams 71 regular season matches, 37 of them have gone under the total, while 33 have gone over and just one has pushed. The team is 23-13 SU at home this season.

The Blue Jackets have converted on just 15.1 percent of their power play opportunities this season, a mark that’s ranked 31st overall in the NHL. On the other hand, their penalty kill is ranked 26th overall, and they’ve successfully killed off 77.3 percent of all penalties.

The Blue Jackets, as a collective unit, have been penalized just 3.0 times per game overall this season, 2.6 per game over their past five outings total, and 2.6 per game over their last five home outings. The teams had to kill penalties for just 6.6 minutes per game over their last 10 matchups, overall.

Sporting a .920 save percentage and 28.1 saves per game, Sergei Bobrovsky (31-26-5) has been the primary goalkeeper for Columbus this year. If head coach John Tortorella chooses to give him a rest, however, the team may turn to Joonas Korpisalo (7-8-8 record, .902 save percentage, 3.19 goals against average).

The Jackets will continue to rely on leadership from Artemi Panarin and Seth Jones. Panarin (63 points) has tallied 21 goals and 42 assists and has recorded two or more points in 12 different games this year. Jones has 14 goals and 35 assists to his credit and has recorded at least one point in 35 games.

Over on the other bench, Ottawa is 26-44 straight up (SU) and has lost 15.4 units for moneyline bettors thus far. Through 70 regular season outings, 37 of its games have gone over the total, while 32 have gone under and none have pushed. As a road team, the Senators are 11-24 SU.

The Senators have converted on just 17.1 percent of their power play opportunities this season, a figure that places them in the bottom-10 overall among NHL teams. On the other hand, its penalty kill unit is ranked 29th overall and it’s successfully defended 75.4 percent of all opponent power plays.

Ottawa’s players have been penalized 3.5 times per game in total this season, and 2.9 per game over their past ten games. The teams been forced to defend opponent power plays just 6.7 minutes per game over their last 10 outings.

Craig Anderson (27.6 saves per game) has been the main option in goal for Ottawa. Anderson owns a 22-29-6 record, while registering a .902 save percentage and 3.21 goals against average this year.

Mark Stone (20 goals, 42 assists) has been one of the most vital playmaking threats for the visiting Senators.

Ottawa Senators vs. Columbus Blue Jackets Free Picks

Prediction: SU Winner – Blue Jackets, O/U – Over

Betting Trends

  • Columbus is 6-4 in games decided by a shootout this season while Ottawa is 2-7 in shootouts.
  • The total has gone over in three of Columbus last five games.
  • Columbus has averaged 2.8 goals per game overall this year, but is scoring 4.3 per contest over its six-game winning streak.
  • Seven of Columbus last ten contests have been decided by two or more goals, and the club is 5-2 overall in those games.
  • Ottawa skaters have dished out the leagues sixth-most hits per game (24.0).