Carolina Hurricanes (29-30-9) at Columbus Blue Jackets (35-26-6)
|Date & Time||Tuesday March 18, 2014, 7:00 PM (EDT)|
The Line: Columbus Blue Jackets -157 / Carolina Hurricanes +143 --- Over/Under: 5.5
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The Blue Jackets look to improve their standing in the Eastern Conference playoff picture with a win at home against the Carolina Hurricanes who at this point are just playing out the string.
The Hurricanes have to be considered one of the bigger disappointments in the league over the last two seasons as expectations were through the roof when they acquired Jordan Staal from the Penguins to go alongside brother Eric and Jeff Skinner. While the Canes have had some injury concerns namely to goaltender Cam Ward they should be able to qualify for the lackluster Eastern Conference playoffs but with a nine point deficit staring them in the face it is hard to imagine the Canes will qualify. Anton Khudobin has been the lone bright spot for the Canes as the former Bruins backup has played quite well this season and will be the goalie of the future moving forward due to Cam Ward’s health concerns and inconsistent play.
The Blue Jackets were expected to do some damage this season after they moved to the Eastern Conference and while they haven’t played like many thought they are still in the mix sitting in seventh place. Columbus has played much better in the second half of the season and are certainly a team to watch out for if they qualify for the playoff especially if they can slip into the six seed and match up against a team like Tampa Bay or Montreal. Sergei Bobrovsky will be the x-factor once again for this Jackets team as the reigning Vezina Trophy winner is playing well once again and against a Canes team who has last seven of their last 10 I think he will have a ton of confidence playing behind his teammates. Not too much to think about here as the Jackets should win with ease and are worth a look on the puck line as I think BoBo can keep the Canes off the board.