Dallas Stars vs. Columbus Blue Jackets December 19 Betting Preview
The games aren't getting easier for the Columbus Blue Jackets following a loss to the NHL-leading Boston Bruins on December 17 that has the Blue Jackets on a three-game losing streak. Up next? The Blue Jackets return to Ohio for one game to face the Central Division-leading Dallas Stars in the first of two head-to-head matchups this season.
Columbus Blue Jackets Betting Preview
Let's start with the positives in the 4-2 loss to the league-leading Bruins. Boone Jenner and Patrik Laine both scored on the powerplay, while Daniil Tarasov made 35 saves in the loss. The Blue Jackets enter Monday night's matchup with a 10-18-2 record.
Columbus has lost their last three games in a row, giving up four goals per game over those three games. In the Blue Jackets' previous five games, only one game has hit the over of 6.5 goals, while four games ended in at least a 1.5-goal spread. On the positive side, the home team is 4-0 in the last four Stars vs. Blue Jackets matchups.
The Blue Jackets average 2.60 goals per game on 29.3 shots while giving up 4.03 goals per game on 35.4 shots. After scoring two powerplay goals against one of the best penalty-killing units in the league, Columbus' powerplay is ranked 29th in the NHL and operating at 15.5 percent (13 powerplay goals). The Blue Jackets' penalty killers are ranked 18th, operating at 77.6 percent efficiency (18 powerplay goals against).
With Daniil Tarasov (2-5-1, 3.27 GAA) getting the start against the Boston Bruins, we expect Elvis to be back in the building and in the net for CBJ. Elvis Merzlinkins has a 4-8-0 record, a 4.68 goals-against average, and a .864 save percentage.
Dallas Stars Betting Preview
The Dallas Stars arrive in Ohio with an 18-8-6 record, having lost the previous game 5-4 in overtime to the Carolina Hurricanes. The Stars have won three of the last five games, with one game hitting the over of 6.5 goals and only one game ending in at least a 1.5-goal spread. Dallas is 2-8 against CBJ in Columbus over the previous ten games.
Dallas is ranked fourth in the NHL and averages 3.59 goals per game on 31.9 shots per game while giving up 2.75 goals on 31.8 shots per game. The Stars' powerplay is ranked ninth in the NHL, converting at 25.8 percent (25 powerplay goals). The Blue Jackets are facing another of the NHL's best penalty-killing units, as Dallas is ranked fourth in the NHL, killing off 83.5 percent of the Stars' penalties (19 powerplay goals against).
With Scott Wedgewood (6-4-3, 3.03 GAA) starting the Stars' previous game against the Hurricanes, we expect Dallas' number-one goalie Jake Oettinger (12-4-3, 2.42 GAA) to get the start for the Stars.
Stars vs. Blue Jackets Betting Odds And Predictions
We use the NHL standard of 6.5 for our total goals betting line. Using the total goals betting line of 6.5 goals, the over is listed at (+100), while the under is listed at (-121).
We don't like predicting long nights for the Columbus Blue Jackets. However, we foresee another long night against a very good hockey team for the Columbus Blue Jackets.
Our first pick is to take the under. CBJ isn't scoring enough, and Jake Oettinger and the Dallas Stars are pretty good at stopping the opposition from scoring.
Our second and final pick is to take the Columbus Blue Jackets to cover the puck line spread of 1.5 goals. Even in defeat, the Dallas Stars are playing close hockey most nights. We think CBJ has enough fight to at least keep this close until the end and will cover the spread.
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