Columbus Blue Jackets at Buffalo Sabres odds, picks and best bets

The Buffalo Sabres (25-24-8) host the Columbus Blue Jackets (30-17-10) Thursday at KeyBank Center. Puck drop is scheduled for 7 p.m. ET. We analyze the Blue Jackets-Sabres sports betting odds and lines, while providing NHL betting tips and picks around this matchup.

Blue Jackets at Sabres: Projected starting goalies

Elvis Merzlikins vs. Carter Hutton

Merzlikins took a 2-1 overtime loss against the Tampa Bay Lightning his last time out, despite stopping 28 of 30 shots faced. The 25-year-old is 12-7-5 with a 2.19 goals against average and .930 save percentage on his rookie season.

Hutton has strung together a rare two-game winning streak. He stopped a total of 64 of 68 shots against the New York Rangers and Detroit Red Wings. He is 9-9-4 with a 3.18 GAA and .896 SV% through 22 starts and one relief appearance.


Place a sports bet on this hockey action or other games at BetMGM.


Blue Jackets at Sabres: Odds, picks and betting tips

Odds courtesy of BetMGM; access USA TODAY Sports for a full list.
Odds last updated at 8:40 a.m. ET.

Prediction

Blue Jackets 5, Sabres 2

Moneyline (ML)

The Blue Jackets and Sabres have equal -110 odds in a pick ’em Thursday in Buffalo. The Jackets are 7-1-2 across their last 10 games and 12-7-7 on the road for the season, but they’ve dropped two straight games to the Colorado Avalanche (2-1) and Tampa Bay Lightning (2-1) with injuries to Cam Atkinson and Seth Jones weakening the lineup. The Sabres are coming off a 3-2 win over the Red Wings Tuesday, but they’re just 4-5-1 over their last 10 games and a modest 16-10-4 at home.

Take the BLUE JACKETS (-110) with no direction offered from the oddsmakers. The Jackets are still the stronger team, even with the injuries, and Merzlikins is the far better of the two goaltenders.

Puck Line/Against the Spread (ATS)

We’re going to go to the alternate puck line and back the BLUE JACKETS (-1.5, +260) to win by at least 2 goals on the road. Columbus is 33-24 against the spread overall and 19-7 on the road. Buffalo is 31-26 ATS overall but just 14-16 on home ice.

The season series is split 1-1 coming into Thursday with both sides winning in overtime. The Jackets have been the much better team since the start of January and are the play.

Over/Under (O/U)

Take the OVER 5.5 (+105) as the more profitable side of the total bet and expect the Blue Jackets to take care of the bulk of the scoring. Columbus is just 2-8 against the Over/Under across its last 10 games and Buffalo is 3-6-1 against the number in the same span. Fade Hutton’s two-game hot streak.

Esten’s NHL betting record: 227-209

Want some action in this one? Place a bet at BetMGM now. For more sports betting tips, visit SportsbookWire.com.

Follow @EstenMcLaren and @SportsbookWire on Twitter .

Gannett may earn revenue from audience referrals to betting services. Newsrooms are independent of this relationship and there is no influence on news coverage.

MORE:

This new video of Patrick Mahomes calling his shot on pivotal Super Bowl play is so fascinating

The NFL ‘Bad Lip Reading’ video is back and it’s better than ever

XFL rules: Explaining all the rule differences between the XFL and NFL

XFL Week 1 schedule: Start times, TV channels, how to stream

‘The Masked Singer’ is barely trying to hide Rob Gronkowski

Source: Read Full Article