Free NHL Hockey Prediction: Blue Jackets vs. Sabres NHL Odds
Looking for Columbus Blue Jackets vs. Buffalo Sabres free hockey plays & NHL Odds? NHL betting sees the Blue Jackets taking on the Sabres on Monday, December 20th at KeyBank Center in Buffalo, New York. Cappers Picks provides complimentary expert handicapping picks on all NHL Hockey games all season long so stay tuned for more FREE daily NHL hockey predictions like this Blue Jackets Sabres matchup.
(14-13-1) Columbus Blue Jackets vs. Buffalo Sabres (10-15-5)
Date: Monday, December 20th
Time: 7:00 PM ET
Venue: KeyBank Center, Buffalo NY
NHL Hockey Moneyline Odds: Blue Jackets -110 | Sabres -110 (Bet Now!)
NHL Hockey Puck Line Odds: Blue Jackets -1.5 (+120)
NHL Betting Total: 5.5
With NHL games dropping like flies due to COVID protocols, one of the two matchups that survived on Monday’s slate is the Blue Jackets’ visit to KeyBank Center to take on Buffalo. Columbus is in a rut right now, but so is Buffalo so this may be a ‘bad’ good matchup.
Both squads have just two wins in their last ten games, with Columbus having lost four of their last five. Monday’s visit to Buffalo is also the fourth straight road game for the Blue Jackets, while the Sabres have collected points in four straight.
Columbus Blue Jackets
It’s no secret where Columbus’ struggles have come lately as they have allowed 4+ goals in five of the last six. Their two wins over the last 10 games have come when having to score 6 against San Jose (6-4) and 5 vs. the Kraken (5-4).
Elvis Merzlikins has been in net for the last six games, but can Brad Larsen continue to go with him during these struggles? Merzlikins did start the season 9-3, so maybe Columbus just has to let their top netminder work through his issues right now.
Like all teams, Columbus is working through health and safety protocols right now with their biggest absence being 4th leading scorer Boone Jenner. Leading scorer Oliver Bjorkstrand has also been held scoreless in three of the last four as has Jakub Voracek.
Monday night’s game is a toss-up with both teams listed at -110, but should Buffalo take offense to that at home? The Sabres are playing kind of well picking up points in all three games on their most recent road trip at Winnipeg, at Minnesota, and at Pittsburgh.
Buffalo is 0-2-1 at home so far in December though, and just 6-8-2 at the KeyBank Center on the season. At the very least it should be a good offensive night for the Sabres up against the struggling Merzlikis, even though Buffalo ranks 24th in the NHL in scoring (2.7 goals/game).
The Sabres also haven’t played since their December 17th, 3-2 OT loss in Pittsburgh which was also on the back-to-back. 2nd string goaltender Malcolm Subban stopped 45 of 48 shots in that matchup, but he’ll likely give way back to Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen with the extra rest.
Luukkonen has started five of the last six games for Buffalo, and he’s held opponents to 2 goals in each of those outings. For all their faults on defense, Columbus is a top 10 team in scoring so Luukonen may have his hands full in his 10th career game.
NHL Betting Trends:
- Blue Jackets are 5-1 last 6 vs. team with losing record
- Blue Jackets are 16-41 last 57 road games
- Blue Jackets are 2-8 last 10 overall
- OVER is 4-0 Blue Jackets last 4 road games
- Sabres are 0-4 last 4 home games
- Sabres are 19-51 last 70 overall
- Sabres are 6-18 last 24 Monday games
- UNDER is 5-0-1 Sabres last 6 overall
Free Buffalo Sabres vs. Columbus Blue Jackets NHL Prediction:
The side looks like it would favor Buffalo in this matchup. They are at home, playing fairly well, and have a goaltender who is unproven yet playing well. Both teams are very well rested with a couple days in between their last game, but idle hands for the Blue Jackets playing in their fourth straight road game may doom them.
4* Free NHL Betting Pick: Sabres -110
This also looks like it will be on the higher scoring side.
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