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Battle for Metro: Penguins vs Blue Jackets

The matchup we’ve all been waiting for – the Pittsburgh Penguins vs the Columbus Blue Jackets. I am being a little sarcastic but, man, on paper this is one of the best games of the year. Columbus is going for its 11th straight win and could actually take over first place in the Metropolitan with a win tonight while the Penguins are the defending champs and lead the way analytically in most offensive categories.  

SHARK BITES
  • The Penguins are 1-3 in their last 4 games on the road against the Blue Jackets.
  • The total has gone OVER in 13 of the Penguins' last 15 games.
  • The Penguins are 14-4 on the puckline in their last 18 games as an underdog.

What Columbus is doing this year is truly remarkable and almost no one expected it. A ton of people (myself included), however, expect it to end sooner rather than later. Much of the Blue Jackets’ success this season has been driven by their league-best power play, which is operating at a 27 percent clip right now. No team has had a PP that efficient since the 1980s and there is no way that it’s sustainable. Everything is just happening all at once for Columbus and the Jackets should be due for a reality check tonight when they take on a Penguins team that has been embarrassing some good clubs.

Coming off a 7-2 dismantling of Antti Raanta and the New York Rangers, the black and gold will be anxious to end this outrageous streak and put the Blue Jackets back in their place. Columbus has quietly turned into a division rival just a season removed from finishing 15th in the Eastern Conference.

The betting odds for this game opened relatively close with the slight underdog edge going to the Penguins. This is a real coming-of-age type of game for the Jackets but I think they get pushed around on their home ice tonight.

Opening Odds & Computer Pick

On the opening NHL betting line for this matchup, Columbus sat as -110 favorites over at BetOnline. The total was set at 5.5 at Bovada but may move closer to puck drop.

Odds Shark computer prediction handicapping models run on this game pick a 3.6-2.2 victory for the Blue Jackets. View the computer score prediction and who will win the pick on the moneyline for all upcoming NHL matchups here.

Pittsburgh Penguins vs Columbus Blue Jackets Matchup

Team Betting Records & Power Rankings

The Columbus Blue Jackets are 21-5-4 so far on the season. The Pittsburgh Penguins, meanwhile, are 21-7-5. OVER/UNDER betting fans have seen Columbus go 9-18-3 and the Penguins go 21-8-4 on the totals. Stay Informed: follow us on Twitter for odds specials, betting line moves and Columbus vs Pittsburgh injuries news.

It's an NHL hockey betting matchup between the No. 1-rated Columbus Blue Jackets and the No. 7-ranked Pittsburgh Penguins, according to the latest NHL power poll here at Odds Shark.

Statistical Matchup

The game also pits Columbus's No. 2-ranked offense, averaging 3.37 goals per game, against a Penguins defense that ranks No. 14 at 2.79 goals allowed. The Blue Jackets power play is averaging 27.06% while the Penguins defense kills off 79.13% of their penalties.

Recent Outings Betting Recap

Pittsburgh won its last outing, a 7-2 result against the Rangers on December 20. Bettors who backed the Penguins at -162 on the moneyline won on the day, and the total score (9) sent OVER bettors to the payout window.

The Blue Jackets were a 3-2 winner in their most recent outing at home against the Kings. That made winners of bettors who got Columbus at -127 on the moneyline, while the total score (5) was good news for OVER bettors.

Betting Trends
  • Pittsburgh is 2-4 ATS in its last 6 games
  • Pittsburgh is 8-2 SU in its last 10 games
  • The total has gone OVER in 13 of Pittsburgh's last 15 games
  • Pittsburgh is 1-4 ATS in its last 5 games on the road
  • Columbus is 5-2 ATS in its last 7 games
  • Columbus is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games
  • Columbus is 8-3 ATS in its last 11 games at home
  • Columbus is 11-2 SU in its last 13 games at home

Next Betting Matchups

Pittsburgh home to New Jersey, Friday, December 23rd
Columbus home to Montreal, Friday, December 23rd

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