Capital One Arena plays host to a Metro Division clash as the Columbus Blue Jackets come into town to face the Washington Capitals. TVA Sports will showcase the game, and the action gets underway at 7 p.m. ET on Friday, February 9.
Columbus Blue Jackets at Washington Capitals Odds
Washington (+125) is playing the role of underdog to Washington (-145), and the oddsmakers have set the Over/Under (O/U) at 6 goals. The line for betting the total stands at -130 for the under and +110 for the over.
The Capitals are 31-22 straight up (SU) and have netted moneyline bettors 4.9 units this year. That win percentage, the best in the Metropolitan Division so far this season, is a slide from what the team managed during the 2016-17 season (55-27). Among its 53 games this season, 30 have gone over the total, while 23 have gone under and none have pushed. The team’s 19-9 SU at home this year.
Washington has converted on 20.7 percent of its power play opportunities this season, a figure that’s right around league average. On the other hand, its penalty kill is ranked 21st overall, and it’s successfully killed off 79.0 percent of all penalties.
As a team, Washington has been penalized 4.2 times per game overall this season, and 2.8 per game over its last five outings home outings. The team has been forced to defend opposition power plays for just 6.8 minutes per contest over its last five home games.
Averaging 28.6 saves per game with a .915 save percentage, Braden Holtby (27-12-2) has been the top option in goal for the Capitals this year. If they, however, choose to rest him, the team may turn to Philipp Grubauer (4-14-14 record, .913 save percentage, 2.69 goals against average).
The Caps will continue relying on leadership via Alex Ovechkin and Evgeny Kuznetsov. Ovechkin (58 points) has tallied 32 goals and 26 assists and has recorded two or more points 15 times this year. Kuznetsov has 14 goals and 36 assists to his name and has recorded a point in 32 contests.
On the other side of the rink, Columbus is 27-26 straight up (SU) and has lost 5.1 units for bettors taking the moneyline thus far. A total of 30 of its contests have gone under the total, while 22 have gone over and just one has pushed. As a road team so far, Columbus is 11-15 SU.
Columbus has converted on just 13.9 percent of its power play opportunities this season, a mark that’s ranked 32nd in the NHL. On the other hand, its penalty kill unit is ranked 28th overall and it’s successfully defended 75.0 percent of all penalties.
Columbus’ players have been whistled for penalties only 3.1 times per game in total this season, and 2.4 per game over their last five on the road. The team has had to defend opponent power plays just 5.7 minutes per game over their last 10 outings.
Sergei Bobrovsky (28.7 saves per game) has been the primary option in the net for Columbus. Bobrovsky owns a 22-21-4 record, while registering a .920 save percentage and 2.48 goals against average this year.
For the visiting Blue Jackets, the offense will be coordinated by Artemi Panarin, who has 29 assists and 13 goals on the year.
Columbus Blue Jackets at Washington Capitals Free Picks
The total has gone over in four of Washington’s last five games.
Power plays and penalty kills may have a key role in tonight’s game. The Blue Jackets are 12-13 when they serve fewer penalty minutes than their opponent and 23-20 in games where they’re in the box for fewer than 10 penalty minutes, total. The Capitals are 11-5 when they serve fewer penalty minutes than the opposition and 16-10 in games where they’re in the box for less than 10 minutes.
Two of Columbus’ last ten games have ended in a shootout. The team is 1-1 in those games and 6-4 overall in shootouts this season.
Washington has averaged 8.4 takeaways per game over its last five home games, an improvement over its season average of 7.2 takeaways per game (ranked 16th).
Columbus has scored just 2.0 goals per game (while allowing 3.3) over its four-game losing skid.
Columbus is ranked 15th with 7.5 takeaways per game. That figure has trended down recently, however, as the team has averaged 6.5 takeaways over its last 10 games and 5.0 takeaways over its last five.