Phoenix Coyotes vs. Columbus Blue Jackets - 1/2/14
Columbus Blue Jackets (17-19-4) at Phoenix Coyotes (20-10-9)
NHL Hockey: Thursday, January 2, 2014 at 9:00 pm (Jobing.com Arena)
The Line: Phoenix Coyotes -163 / Columbus Blue Jackets +148 --- Over/Under: 5.5 See the Latest Odds
TV: FS-O, KTVK
The Columbus Blue Jackets visit the Jobing.com Arena in Glendale, Arizona to face off against the Phoenix Coyotes on Thursday night.
Columbus comes into Phoenix off of a 5-3 loss at Colorado, which followed a 5-3 loss to Pittsburgh. The Blue Jackets are 5-4-1 over the last ten games. Columbus has been dealing with injuries for the better part of the season, but Sergei Bobrovsky is expected to return on Thursday, although it will likely be in a backup role. The Blue Jackets have been getting excellent production from center Ryan Johansen, who leads the team in goals with 16 and points with 32 on the season. Johansen has amassed ten goals and eight assists over the last 17 games.
Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports
Phoenix comes into Thursday’s game winners of only two of the last eight games played. The Coyotes have gone to overtime in six straight games against opponents ranging in quality from the Buffalo Sabres to the San Jose Sharks and Anaheim Ducks. Phoenix lost four of the six overtime games, but to glean something positive the Coyotes obviously earned a point in each of the six. At this point, I think the Yotes players would just like to finish a game in regulation.
When these two teams square off the home team is 5-0 in the last five contests. Columbus is just 1-6 in the last seven meetings in Phoenix. This season the Coyotes rank sixth in the NHL in goals per game at 3.0, but over the last eight contests the Yotes have averaged only 1.8 goals per game. Neither side really interests me here as I think the game will come down to the wire, so I’ll take a look to the total. Columbus has played over the total in eight of the last ten games, and Phoenix has gone over the total nine of the last ten games at home against teams with a losing road record. I have a slight lean toward the over given recent trends for the two teams coming into this game, but you may be better suited looking at another game on Thursday’s large NHL card.