New York Rangers (1-0-0) at Columbus Blue Jackets (1-0-0)
|Date & Time||Saturday October 11, 2014, 7:00 PM (EDT)|
The Line: Columbus Blue Jackets +102 / New York Rangers -112 --- Over/Under: 5
The New York Rangers and Columbus Blue Jackets play Saturday at the Nationwide Arena.
The New York Rangers showed very little signs of a Stanley Cup hangover as they beat the St. Louis Blues, 3-2. Despite committing eight penalties, the Rangers didn’t allow a single power play goal and received a monster performance from Rick Nash. The Rangers left wing had two goals and an assist in the victory, continuing his career dominance over the Blues. Chris Kreider scored the other goal and Martin St. Louis racked up two assists in the season opener. Of course, Henrik Lundqvist was his usual self by allowing just two goals on 25 shots and picking up his first career win against the Blues. The New York Rangers look like a more confident team from a year ago that now knows it can compete and win at the highest level.
The Columbus Blue Jackets beat up the Buffalo Sabres in their season opener, 3-1. The Blue Jackets were a disciplined team that committed only two penalties and played terrific defense throughout the night. Goalie Sergei Bobrovsky blocked 21 of 22 shots and has now won five straight regular season games when he’s in net. Artem Anisimov, Jack Skille and Cam Atkinson were the three Columbus players who scored in the victory, and Scott Hartnell led the team with five shots on goal. The Blue Jackets have been known to get off to slow starts the past few years and they hoped to change that this season. If Columbus can continue to play as disciplined and defensive minded as it did in the season opener, this will be a team that doesn’t have to worry about falling back to its old habits.
The Rangers are 7-2 in their last 9 vs. Eastern Conference and 1-4 in their last 5 road games. The Blue Jackets are 13-6 in their last 19 games playing on 1 days rest and 1-4 in their last 5 games following a win. The road team is 4-0 in the last 4 meetings.
The under may be worth a look with two hot goalies in the net. However, I give the slight edge to Henrik Lundqvist in this matchup and don't mind taking the Rangers on the road for the solid price.