The Columbus Blue Jackets face the Ottawa Senators with both teams heading in opposite directions this season. The Blue Jackets have a 14-30-3 record and with only three wins in their last 10 games are in last place in the Central Division. The Oilers have a 27-18-3 record and with six wins in a row have leaped to the top of the Pacific Division. Both teams are looking to improve within their divisions and the upcoming game should be a good one as a result.
Blue Jackets defense has been awful this yearThe Blue Jackets are having a season to forget with their offense struggling and scoring only 2.57 goals per game. Johnny Gaudreau, Patrik Laine, and Jack Roslovic have combined for 31 goals and 69 assists but the rest of the offense has struggled. Only five skaters have 10 goals or more and opponents can eliminate the hapless offense as a result.
The offense has struggled but the defense has let the Blue Jackets down, allowing 3.89 goals per game with 17 goals in the last five games. Vladislav Gavrikov and Andrew Peeke have combined for 3.3 defensive point shares but the rest of the unit has been awful, allowing opponents to find open shots on the net at will. Additionally, goaltender Joonas Korpisalo has struggled in the net with a .908 save percentage and a 3.30 goals-against average on 642 shots.
Oilers have been led by remarkable offenseThe Oilers are having a great season with their offense leading the way, scoring 3.71 goals per game including 31 goals in the last six games. Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl have scored 68 goals and 93 assists to lead the top two lines but the rest of the offense has also been great. Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Zach Hyman, and Klim Kostin have combined for 55 goals and 71 assists while defensemen Darnell Nurse and Tyson Barrie have added 11 goals and 43 assists from the point to put the offense over the top.
The offense has been great but the defense has struggled, allowing 3.23 goals per game. Darnell Nurse and Cody Ceci have combined for 5.2 defensive points shares but the rest of the unit has struggled, allowing opponents to find open shots on the net at will. The one bright spot has been the play of goaltender Stuart Skinner who has a .915 save percentage and a 2.92 goals-against average on 880 shots.
Best Bets for this Game
Full-Game Side Bet
The Blue Jackets are desperate to return to the win column and look to win the upcoming game. The problem is that the Oilers are having a great season and look to overwhelm the Blue Jackets on both ends of the ice. The Oilers, who average 3.71 goals per game, should find the back of the net at will against a Blue Jackets defense that allows 3.89 goals per game, with Connor McDavid, Leon Draisaitl, and the rest of the forward unit carrying the puck into the offensive zone and creating open shots with effective puck movement. The Oilers should also limit the Blue Jackets offense that is scoring only 2.57 goals per game with Darnell Nurse, Cody Ceci, and the rest of the defensive unit creating turnovers in the defensive zone and limiting shots on the net, allowing goaltender Stuart Skinner to make plenty of big saves. The Oilers should win the game and cover the spread in a dominant win on their home ice to extend their win streak to seven games.
Full-Game Total Pick
Both defenses have been awful and the upcoming game should reflect that with both forward units finding the back of the net throughout the game. The Blue Jackets should create plenty of scoring chances against an Oilers defense that allows 3.23 goals per game with Johnny Gaudreau, Patrik Laine, and the rest of the forward unit carrying the puck into the offensive zone and creating open shots with quick passes. The Oilers, who have scored 31 goals in the last six games, should run up the score against the Blue Jackets, who have allowed 17 goals in their last five games, with Connor McDavid, Leon Draisaitl, Zach Hyman, and the rest of the forward unit crashing the net on the rush and creating open shots with effective puck movement while defensemen Darnell Nurse and Tyson Barrie generate shots on the net from the blue line. The Over should cover in a high-scoring game with both offenses stepping up.
Take the Over on 6.5 goals.