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Buffalo Sabres vs. Columbus Blue Jackets 2/23/24 NHL Betting Picks

Buffalo Sabres vs. Columbus Blue Jackets 2/23/24 – In an intriguing matchup in the NHL regular season, the Buffalo Sabres (24-27-4) are set to face off against the Columbus Blue Jackets (17-26-10) at Nationwide Arena on Friday, February 23, 2024. Both teams are looking to improve their standings as they navigate through the season, with the Sabres aiming to build on their slightly better win-loss record. This game promises to be a closely contested battle, offering an exciting opportunity for fans and bettors alike. Here is our free NHL betting prediction on this upcoming game.

Buffalo Sabres vs. Columbus Blue Jackets 2/23/24

When: Friday, February 23, 2024, at 7:00 PM ET

Where: Nationwide Arena


Stream: NHL.TV

Buffalo Sabres vs. Columbus Blue Jackets 2/23/24 Betting Odds:

-1.5 +175
o6.5 -125
Blue Jackets
+1.5 -205
u6.5 +109
Bet Now on this Game

Goaltender Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen vs. Goaltender Elvis Merzlikins

In 31 games played this season, Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen has posted a 14-14-2 record for the Sabres. He has a respectable 2.54 goals against average along with a .910 save percentage in nearly 1,750 minutes on the ice. Luukkonen has faced 825 shots this season, stopping 751 of them. At just 23 years old, he is emerging as a reliable presence in net for a rebuilding Buffalo team.

As for Merzlikins, the Blue Jackets netminder has played 30 games with a record of 10-11-7. His 3.21 goals against average and .904 save percentage are rather underwhelming, though he has already faced nearly 950 shots this year. Now 29 years old, Merzlikins has shown flashes of strong play in the past but has struggled behind a porous Columbus defense this season. He will need to improve his performance in the final stretch of the year.

With Luukkonen’s steady play and Merzlikins’ inconsistency, the Sabres appear to have an advantage in goal coming into this contest. However, Merzlikins has proven he can get hot at times, so Columbus will hope Friday is one of those nights. Still, Luukkonen gives Buffalo the early edge between the pipes.

Sabres Rolling Offense vs Struggling Blue Jackets Defense

The Sabres offense runs through 25-year old star center Casey Mittelstadt, who leads the team with 44 points. However, Alex Tuch and Rasmus Dahlin remain consistent threats as well, each recording 37 points. This Buffalo attack should be able to take advantage of a Columbus defense that ranks 5th-worst in goals against. Zach Werenski leads the Blue Jackets blue line but has taken a step back this year, and there isn’t much talent beyond him. Expect the Sabres to pepper Merzlikins with shots from all angles in this one.

Johnny Gaudreau Leads Blue Jackets Against Inconsistent Sabres Defense

While far from an offensive juggernaut, Columbus does have some weapons up front led by Johnny Gaudreau. The prized free agent pickup leads the team with 37 points, though most expected him to score at a higher clip. Youngster Kirill Marchenko has burst onto the scene with 16 goals, giving the Blue Jackets a nice one-two punch offensively. They’ll look to break down an inconsistent Sabres defense led by Rasmus Dahlin. He alone can’t contain the Ohio offense though, so look for multiple Blue Jackets to hit the scoresheet Friday night.

NHL Betting Odds: TBD, Over/Under: TBD

As the betting odds have yet to be determined, it’s essential to keep an eye on the lines as they become available. Given the current form and historical performances, the odds are expected to be closely matched. Bettors should consider the goaltending matchup and offensive capabilities of both teams when placing their bets.


Buffalo Sabres Betting Trends

Sabres are 2-3 in their last 5 games.
Buffalo Sabres are 3-2 in their last 5 games against the spread.
Sabres are 17-9 in their road games against the spread.
The totals have gone OVER in 1 of Sabres’ last 5 games.
The totals have gone OVER in 10 of Sabres’ 29 last games at home.

Columbus Blue Jackets Betting Trends

Blue Jackets are 3-2 in their last 5 games.
Columbus Blue Jackets are 3-2 in their last 5 games against the spread.
Blue Jackets are 17-9 in their road games against the spread.
The totals have gone OVER in 3 of Blue Jackets’ last 5 games.
The totals have gone OVER in 13 of Blue Jackets’ 27 last games at home.

Buffalo Sabres vs. Columbus Blue Jackets Betting Picks

This game presents a closely contested battle, with both teams showing comparable forms and trends. The key factors will likely be goaltender performance and the ability of each team’s offense to capitalize on scoring opportunities. Based on the analysis and recent trends, a slight edge might be given to the Sabres due to their road record against the spread and goaltending stability.

However, considering the unpredictable nature of NHL games, bettors should look for value in live betting options on sports betting online websites, where game flow can provide insights into potential outcomes. Prop bets on individual player performances, such as goals or assists for key players like Mittelstadt or Gaudreau, could also offer value.

Score Prediction: Sabres 3, Blue Jackets 2.