The Blue Jackets and Sabres are set to face off at 5:00 ET on ESPN+. The Sabres will host the game at KeyBank Center in Buffalo, NY. The odds for this Eastern conference game currently have the Sabres as the betting favorite with the over/under line sitting at 7 goals.

COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS VS BUFFALO SABRES BETTING PICK

The Pick: Buffalo Sabres -1.5

This game will be played at KeyBank Center at 5:00 ET on Saturday, December 30th.

WHY BET THE BUFFALO SABRES:

  • Despite being 1.5 goal underdogs, we predict the Blue Jackets to come out on top with a final score of 4-3.
  • We like the Blue Jackets on the moneyline (+168)
  • The Blue Jackets are also our pick on the spread at +1.5

Can the Columbus Offense Score Enough on the Road?

For the season, the Blue Jackets currently hold an overall record of 12-19-7. On the road, Columbus has gone 4-8-4 and they are 8-10-3 at home. They are currently positioned 8th in the Eastern Metropolitan division and 15th in the Eastern conference.

In terms of the puck line, Columbus are 23-14. When playing on the road against the puck line, they are 12-4, while their overall home performance is 11-10. This season, Columbus' games have an average of 6.9 goals per game. The average over/under number for the season is 6.5. The Blue Jackets come in with an over/under performance of 21-15-1.

Across their last three road contests, Columbus has been good against the puck line posting a mark of 3-0. Their overall mark in these games was 2-1, while averaging 6 goals per game.

In terms of their offensive performance, the Blue Jackets are averaging 3.2 goals per game this season, putting them in the 10th spot in the NHL. When it comes to shots on goal per game, they are ranked 10th in the league. This season, the Blue Jackets have a 3-4 record in games where they outshoot their opponent. In games with fewer shots on goal, they hold a 9-14 record.

Columbus' current leading scorer is Kirill Marchenko. This season, he has 13 goals, which puts him 56th in the NHL. In addition to his goal scoring, Marchenko has 8 assists this season.

Defensively, the Sabres are currently 18th in goals allowed. On average, opponents are taking 29.5 shots per game against Buffalo. They also are 26th in shutouts, coming in with 1 shutouts.

Goalie Daniil Tarasov gets the start and has made three starts this season. His record at this point is 1-2, and his save percentage is 0.27%.

Can Buffalo Lock in a Home Win?

This season, the Sabres currently hold an overall record of 14-18-4. When playing on the road, Buffalo has a 7-9-3 record, while they are 7-9-1 at home. They are currently positioned 7th in the Eastern Atlantic division and 14th in the Eastern conference.

When it came to the puck line, Buffalo have posted a 18-18 record. Their road performance against the puck line stands at 12-7, while they are 6-11 at home. For the season, Buffalo's games have finished with an average of 6.4 goals per game. Their average over/under line for the season is 6.5. Overall, the Sabres have an over/under record of 16-19-1.

When looking at their past three home matchups, Buffalo has an puck line record of 2-1 while averaging 2 per game. The team went 1-2 overall in these games.

When looking at their offense, the Sabres have an average of 3 goals per game this season, positioning themselves 18th in the NHL. In terms of shots on goal per game, they are ranked 14th in the league. This season, the Sabres are 9-10 when getting more shots on goal than their opponents. And in games with fewer shots on goal, they have a 5-8 record.

Buffalo's leading goal scorer is Jeff Skinner. So far this season, he has 14 goals, placing him 36th in the NHL. In addition to his goal scoring, Skinner has 11 assists this season.

Defensively, the Sabres are currently 18th in goals allowed. On average, opponents are taking 29.5 shots per game against Buffalo. They also are 26th in shutouts, coming in with 1 shutouts.

Goalie Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen gets the start and has made 14 starts this season. His record at this point is 6-8, and his save percentage is 0.64%.