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Blue Jackets vs. Stars NHL Odds & Pick: Blue Jackets vs. Stars: Back Dallas as Heavy Favorite (Saturday, April 17)

Blue Jackets vs. Stars NHL Odds & Pick: Blue Jackets vs. Stars: Back Dallas as Heavy Favorite (Saturday, April 17) article feature image

Glenn James/NHLI via Getty Images. Pictured: Dallas Stars goaltender Anton Khudobin.

Blue Jackets vs. Stars Odds

Blue Jackets Odds+157
Stars Odds-186
TimeSaturday, 8 p.m. ET
Odds as of Friday night via DraftKings.

Columbus will take another attempt at playing spoiler to Dallas’ NHL playoff hopes Saturday night when they go at it American Airlines Center.

These sides met Thursday, with the Stars picking up a 4-1 victory over the Blue Jackets.

Let’s take a look to see what might be in store in their latest contest.

Columbus Blue Jackets

The visitors showed they will continue to compete despite being essentially eliminated from the playoff race again in Thursday’s defeat. The Blue Jackets made the Stars work for the much-needed two points, controlling play in the first period and skating to a 1-0 lead.

However, Dallas gradually took over the game bit by bit, finishing with a dominant third period on its was to the 4-1 scoreline. Jack Roslovic showed very well for the Blue Jackets, skating to an xGF% of 83.4 and scored Columbus’ lone goal.

The lack of talent in the middle of the ice is likely an area of concern going forward for the Blue Jackets, with Max Domi leading the other top unit between Oliver Bjorkstrand and Patrik Laine. That trio was was heavily outplayed to an xGF% of just 9.9 in the setback.

Expected goals (also known as xG) is a predictive statistic that gives an indication of whether results are based on sustainable factors like a steady creation of scoring chances, or whether it is down to aspects such as shooting luck or outstanding goaltending.

Simply put, an expected goals rate (xGF%) above 50% is considered good because it means a team is creating the majority of the scoring chances. Anything below 50% is usually a sign that a team is struggling to control play.

xG numbers and advanced stats cited from Evolving Hockey, MoneyPuck and Natural Stat Trick.

Dallas Stars

The Stars continued their strong play Thursday in managing to claim the two points and keep pushing for the final playoff spot. Dallas received help out of town as well, withNashville and Chicago both falling in regulation. Combined with their victory, the Stars saw their playoff chances move up to 38.6 percent. A win in this meeting would boost the Stars hopes to 42.8 percent.

Dallas continued its trend of losing small, but winning big with the 4-1 triumph. The franchise is now 11-3 in games settled by more than two goals. As mentioned in past stories, the main reason for Dallas’ concerning record is simply the incredible number of regulation losses and 1-6 mark in shootouts.

I continue to like what I see from the Stars, with all the numbers indicating it’s very reasonable for them to positively regress record wise and put together a good stretch of performances.

After this upcoming game, Dallas plays four consecutive games against the Detroit Red Wings, so it will certainly have an opportunity to try to close the seven-point gap on Nashville, with the Stars having played five less games.

Tyler Seguin skated with teammates for the first time this season after undergoing hip surgery, and his return could be a massive boost to a Stars’ team whose clear fault is a lack of scoring depth.

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Betting Analysis & Pick

I have really liked what I have seen of Dallas this week, even if it has only earned a 1-0-2 record with tough losses to red-hot Nashville and a strong Florida team past regulation. The Stars have skated to an xGF% of 55.44 over the three games, playing with a ton of urgency as they look to push their way into the Central Division’s final payoff spot.

The Blue Jackets definitely still have a lot of guys on the roster with a lot to play for this season, but I just feel with how weak the remaining group is after the Werenski and Savard losses on the back end, it will be very hard for them to hang in most nights from here on out.

Not that they have controlled much of the play so far this year, as the Blue Jackets already sit last in xGF percentage.

I think this is a good spot to back Dallas, which is in strong form, to claim two more points it desperately needs off one of the league’s weaker clubs. I believe we will see a worse price for the Stars by puck drop and wouldn’t play them past -205 odds.

Pick: Dallas (-186)

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