Rangers vs Blue Jackets Game Preview & Odds

Rangers vs Blue Jackets Game Preview & Odds

Written by on February 14, 2020

The Columbus Blue Jackets shocked the National Hockey League in the playoffs a year ago, as they entered as the second wild card in the Eastern Conference and swept the Atlantic Division champion Tampa Bay Lightning in four games. They are knocking on the postseason door again this year; if the season ended today, they would hold the first wild card in the East but are just one point out of third place in the Metropolitan Division — and just three points out of second. On Valentine’s Day they host the New York Rangers, currently in seventh place in the Metropolitan and nine points out of the second wild card. The Rangers have a three-game winning streak and have won six of ten, while the Blue Jackets have lost three straight (although they have gotten points in two of those setbacks). Can the Rangers keep that winning streak going, or will the Blue Jackets defend their home ice? Don’t miss our sports betting preview of this Eastern Conference clash. Let’s see how the NHL betting odds will be for the Rangers vs Blue Jackets.

Rangers vs Blue Jackets Game Preview & Odds

Why should you bet on New York?

The Blueshirts have responded after a loss to Buffalo on February 7, rolling over the Los Angeles Kings at home and then going on the road to beat the Winnipeg Jets and the Minnesota Wild, that win in Minnesota bringing an end to Bruce Boudreau’s tenure as the head coach for the Wild. In that game, New York was down 3-1 but then roared back with a two-goal rally, send the game to overtime and then prevailing in the shootout. Mika Zibanejad scored the tying goal with just 1:06 remaining in the third period, as the Rangers had pulled Alexandar Georgiev with 1:41 left on the clock. Zibanejad redirected a shot from the point, and it got by Wild netminder Alex Stalock. Zibanejad had one of the two New York goals in the shootout, along with Artemi Panarin. It was just New York’s second win in the 19 games in which they have trailed entering the third period. Can the Rangers muster a similar effort playing the next night in another team’s rink? They will need fresh legs to take down the Blue Jackets.

Why should you put your money on Columbus?

The Blue Jackets had strung together three nice wins, taking down Montreal on the road and then Florida and Detroit at home. However, the offense had been sputtering, with the Blue Jackets just scoring three goals combined in those last two wins. They paid the price with 2-1 losses to Colorado and Toronto, and then they went to Buffalo on Thursday and fell, 4-3. So they will also be playing on back-to-back nights when they come home to welcome the Rangers. In that loss to Buffalo, the Blue Jackets had a 2-1 lead going into the third period, but then Victor Olofsson tied the game for the Sabres on the power play, and then he would score the overtime winner. The Blue Jackets had to scramble for a comeback of their own, as the Sabres led 3-2 late in the third, but Markus Nutivaara had the equalizer for Columbus with 1:13 remaining in the third. Nathan Gerbe and Boone Jenner had the other Columbus goals. Matiss Kivlenieks had 23 saves for the Blue Jackets, but that defensive collapse in the third period doomed their chances for a regulation win.

Rangers vs Blue Jackets Final Score Prediction

Both teams had to scramble late in their Thursday night games, and New York ended up with the happier ending. The Rangers have a solid streak going, and so while Columbus leads in the standings, I’m going with the hotter team right now. I predict a final score of New York 3, Columbus 2.