On a packed night, we stay in the east as there are a couple of matchups with big playoff implications on the schedule and some good value in each.
Columbus Blue Jackets (+170) vs Washington Capitals (-200)
The Columbus Blue Jackets are the team coming off a game last night in which they defeated the Ottawa Senators, a struggling team. They have a much tougher opponent tonight in the Washington Capitals. The Capitals have run with Vitek Vanecek since he’s returned from injury and it has gone very well for them, turning their fortunes around. Vanecek has won five in a row and has two shutouts in his past seven games. He has come in and shut the door once again and helped the Capitals get back on track starting on their western road trip.
Expect Joonas Korpisalo to get the start for the Blue Jackets in one last chance to showcase what he can provide possible interested parties. Elvis Merzlikins got the start last night, but the team may believe this is a very important game if they want to climb into a playoff spot. It should be highly contested, but with how Vanecek has played, take the under (U6.5, -110).
Toronto Maple Leafs (+100) vs Carolina Hurricanes (-120)
This is the second game in which the Toronto Maple Leafs will be without the league’s leading goal-scorer, Auston Matthews, and it comes in a game they will need him. The season series is split thus far with the Carolina Hurricanes winning the first matchup 4-1 and then the Maple Leafs taking the more recent game 4-3 in overtime.
Goaltending will be a huge factor in this one, as Frederik Andersen is having a great season, while the Maple Leafs should go back to rookie Erik Kallgren after a shutout in his first start. It’s difficult to trust a goaltender playing in just his third game if he does start, but you can count on Petr Mrazek even less with the numbers he’s put up this season. Take the Hurricanes who have good value today.
Odds via Yahoo and BetMGM.