Columbus Blue Jackets (14-23-9) vs. Seattle Kraken (20-18-9)
Columbus Blue Jackets vs. Seattle Kraken 1/28/24 – In an intriguing matchup slated for Sunday the Columbus Blue Jackets will face off against the Seattle Kraken in a regular-season NHL game. The Blue Jackets will be looking to improve their standing, while the Kraken aim to solidify their position in the league. This game promises an exciting showdown filled with strategic gameplay and skillful execution, making it a must-watch for fans invested in NHL game analysis.
Columbus Blue Jackets have demonstrated flashes of brilliance despite their less-than-ideal standing, particularly their offensive play. Team leaders Johnny Gaudreau and Adam Fantilli have played key roles, giving Columbus enough firepower to challenge Seattle Kraken defense with Gaudreau scoring 29 points (7 goals, 22 assists) while Fantilli notching 25. But to convert that potential into goals will require Columbus being able to navigate their opponents defensive strategies and exploit any scoring opportunities presented.
Seattle Kraken possess powerful offensive talents, highlighted by players like Oliver Bjorkstrand and Jared McCann. Bjorkstrand amassed 36 points from 12 goals and 24 assists, while McCann earned 32. The combination presented a formidable challenge to Blue Jackets defensemen, forcing them to perform at their peak to stop any attempts by Seattle Kraken to score goals; their matchup promises an intense tactical challenge between these teams that pit their offensive abilities against each other’s defense capabilities.
Columbus Blue Jackets vs. Seattle Kraken 1/28/24 Game Info
|Sunday, January 28, 2024 at 9:00 PM ET
|Climate Pledge Arena
Goaltender Elvis Merzlikins vs. Goaltender Joey Daccord
In his 26 starts this season, Elvis Merzlikins has struggled to find consistency between the pipes for Columbus. He’s posted a lackluster 8-16-2 record, alongside a 3.29 goals against average and .903 save percentage. Merzlikins faces a Seattle offense on Sunday that scores 3.28 goals per game on home ice, the 7th highest scoring rate in the NHL. If he can’t raise his game, things could get ugly quick. The Blue Jackets netminder has faced over 30 shots in 4 of his last 5 outings. Considering Seattle averages over 33 shots per home contest, Merzlikins figures to be under heavy pressure all night. He’s already allowed 80 goals in just under 1500 minutes played. Against an offense clicking lately, he can’t afford to let in many soft ones. The 26-year old has been strong at times, making 745 saves so far, but his erratic play lands him well below average among starting goalies.
On the other side, Joey Daccord has provided steady goalkeeping for Seattle this season. In 31 games played, he’s posted a respectable 14-8-8 record with a 2.32 GAA and .922 save percentage – the 12th best mark in the NHL. He takes on a Columbus offense scoring just 2.72 goals per road contest. Daccord has yet to allow more than 3 goals in any January start and has given up 2 or less tallies in 3 of his last 4 overall. If he can maintain that stingy play, he should be able to easily contain the Blue Jackets scoring punch. The 26-year old netminder has faced plenty of rubber this year but answered the bell, stopping 833 of 903 shots sent his way. Against an opponent that struggles offensively, Daccord has a prime opportunity to pick up his 15th win of the year if he remains locked in.
NHL Odds/Point Spread: TBD, Total Odds: TBD
With the betting odds yet to be determined, punters and fans alike are keenly awaiting the lines to gauge the perceived outcomes of this matchup. The goaltenders’ form and team performances will significantly influence the odds, offering insights into potential betting opportunities.
Columbus Blue Jackets Betting Trends
The Blue Jackets enter this matchup having won 3 of their last 5 games. Over their last 5 contests, they have covered the spread in 3 outings. Columbus has been strong on the road against the number this season, going an impressive 14-6 against the spread in away matchups. The over has been the profitable play recently when betting totals on the Blue Jackets, hitting in 3 of their previous 5 contests. For home games, the over has cashed in 13 of their last 26 games played.
Seattle Kraken Betting Trends
The Kraken enter this game ice-cold, with losses in each of their previous 5 matchups. Over that 5 game span, Seattle has struggled against the number as well, covering the spread just once. On the year, the Kraken have been a strong home team to back, covering in 16 of their 25 contests at Climate Pledge Arena. Unders have been the way to go when betting Kraken game totals lately, going under in 4 straight matchups. Looking further back, unders have hit in 9 of Seattle’s last 22 contests on home ice.
Columbus Blue Jackets vs. Seattle Kraken 1/28/24 Betting Picks
Considering the recent form and statistical analysis, this game presents a closely contested battle, with each team having its strengths and weaknesses. The goaltenders’ performances will be particularly crucial, with Merzlikins and Daccord both having the ability to influence the game’s outcome significantly.
Given the Kraken’s strong defensive capabilities and the Blue Jackets’ potential for offensive bursts, this game might lean slightly towards a lower-scoring affair, with both goaltenders playing pivotal roles. However, the Blue Jackets’ recent form on the road and the Kraken’s need to bounce back from their losing streak add layers of complexity to Handpicked Predictions.
Free Pick and Prediction: Seattle Kraken 3, Columbus Blue Jackets 2