Colorado Avalanche (28-25-11) at Columbus Blue Jackets (27-33-4)
|Date & Time||Saturday March 7, 2015, 7:00 PM (EST)|
The Line: Columbus Blue Jackets -105 / Colorado Avalanche -105 --- Over/Under: 5.5
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The Blue Jackets return home looking to claim their second win in as many nights as they host the Colorado Avalanche in Columbus.
The Avalanche look to finish off the regular season with some momentum and perhaps make a final push towards the Western Conference playoffs but in a spot now where they trail by nine points in the wild card race that looks like a pipe dream. Colorado is coming off a spectacular season that came out of nowhere as they went from from selecting with the first overall draft pick to winning the Central division and now run the risk of missing the playoffs altogether. The momentum from last year's overhaul that included the selection of Nathan Mackinnon, and the hiring of both Joe Sakic and Patrick Roy has fizzled out this season and now the Avs are likely going to have to go back to the drawing board especially now that Mackinnon is out for the rest of the year. The Avs will go with Semyon Varlamov here while the Jackets will likely counter with Sergein Bobrovsky despite getting the start last night.
The Blue jackets meanwhile have had a similar fall from grace this season as they were a playoff team last year and now under the pressure of expectation has slipped out of hockey's second season and are likely to finish well short of projection. Columbus isn't a terrible team but I think they were completely overrated coming into the season and seeing them on the outside looking in comes as no surprise to me espesically when you consider they were without their best player in Bobrovsky for a long time and it all starts to make sense. However, the Jackets did end their losing ways last night and will look to make it two in a row against an Avs team likely deflated that they are without one of their best players and could be close to mailing it in. I will give the better team one last shot here as I think this is a make or break game for Colorado and I think they leave it all on the table tonight.