Golden Knights vs Blue Jackets NHL Odds, Picks, Predictions
Photo by David Becker/NHLI via Getty Images. Pictured: Reilly Smith.
- The Golden Knights hit the road to take on a struggling Columbus squad.
- Las Vegas has lost its past two games, but is 9-1-1 on the road this season.
- Nicholas Martin previews the game and shares his best bet below.
Golden Knights vs. Blue Jackets Odds
|Golden Knights Odds||-260|
|Blue Jackets Odds||+215|
|Time||7 p.m. ET|
|TV||Sportsnet RM, BSOH|
|Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.|
Las Vegas has yet to lose three straight games under the guidance of head coach Bruce Cassidy and heads to Columbus looking to keep that streak intact.
The injury ravaged Blue Jackets also enter in the midst of a two-game losing skid, and will look to avoid dropping three straight for a third time this season.
Is a matchup with the Blue Jackets a perfect spot for Vegas to stabilize?
Vegas Golden Knights
In a league as close as the NHL, the difference between successful results and losing ones is very thin. Vegas proved this past weekend that even an elite roster can look pretty middling when playing with a slight lack in urgency.
Expecting Vegas to come out with a significantly better effort on the road makes a lot of sense, especially coming off a loss to the Canucks in which it appeared the Knights took the ice with some complacency.
The Golden Knights stellar 16-6-1 record is the result of and extremely well-rounded team. Vegas has looked the part of a true contender and deserves its spot atop the Western Conference standings.
All the elements are there for continued success, and few teams are seeing as many players driving play in the right direction as Vegas has at the season’s quarter mark.
Vegas’ top line of Jack Eichel, Mark Stone and Chandler Stephenson has controlled play to an expected goals rating of 64.1%, which is the sixth-best mark in the league among forward units with over 100 minutes together.
Such dominance from that trio really is not surprising considering how spectacular Eichel and Stone have been when healthy in their careers. Counting on similar dominance all season long is logical.
The Knights former top unit of William Karlsson, Jon Marchessault and Reilly Smith has managed similar levels of dominance with a 61.9 xGF% in 186.3 minutes together, which also seems sustainable moving forward.
The Knights are skating a wealth of strong two-way talents offensively, and coupled with a deep defensive core, it is far from surprising that this talented roster has played to a 56.35 xGF%.
Vegas’ strong defensive play has allowed rookie netminder Logan Thompson to thrive to a +4.1 goals saved above expected rating and a .920 save percentage.
My expectation would be that Thompson is given a chance to bounce-back with a win Monday after a tough outing Saturday.
Columbus Blue Jackets
Columbus has been dealt a very rough hand as the Blue Jackets roster is absolutely decimated by injuries.
Zach Werenski, Adam Boqvist, Nick Blankenburg and Jake Bean are all meaningful absences from an already sub-par defense. Patrik Laine and Jakub Voracek are meaningful absences offensively.
Realistically, all the talent missing from the lineup could be a positive in the long-term. Columbus never appeared likely to compete this year anyway and the upcoming draft class looks very special.
Even with those names missing from it’s lineup, Columbus’ play has stabilized after a horrific beginning to the season. Columbus played to a 47.24 xGF% and a 4-5-1 record in November.
Joonas Korpisalo will likely start Monday and he’s played reasonably well so far with a +0.5 goals saved above expected rating and .899 save % in eight appearances this season.
Golden Knights vs. Blue Jackets Pick
Vegas has been one of the league’s best teams and the composition of its roster dictates that the dominant results are very likely to be replicated moving forward.
The Knights analytical profile is also very strong and we should see Vegas play with far more pace and urgency than it displayed over an embarrassing pair of losses this past weekend.
The Blue Jackets notably thin defense will likely struggle with the Golden Knights and this should be a great spot for Vegas to get things moving in the right direction again.
Columbus has lost 11 of 20 games this season by two goals or more, and it seems very realistic that allowing the opposition to cover the puckline at such a high rate could continue moving forward.
Vegas is a significantly better side and should be motivated for this one. At +100, Vegas has value to cover the puckline.
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