Columbus Blue Jackets (30-38-8) at New York Islanders (41-25-9)
|Date & Time||Thursday March 31, 2016, 7:00 PM (EDT)|
The Line: New York Islanders -200 / Columbus Blue Jackets +170 --- Over/Under: 5.5
|TV Channel||Stream NHL games all season on ESPN+ for only $4.99 a month. Sign up now!|
The Islanders look to inch closer to clinching a playoff spot as they host the Columbus Blue Jackets in Brooklyn tonight.
The Columbus Blue Jackets were expected to be one of the teams to beat in the Eastern Conference this season after making strides last year but a very slow start that had them behind the eight ball by Halloween made it very tough for them to overcome. Columbus continues to struggle down the stretch and while a few pieces in the offseason could get them back into the fold in a year or two I think getting some young pieces in the draft is their best bet and with this years crop there are certainly some game changers available. The Jackets are a very weak 13-22-2 on the road this season and come in as big time underdogs against an Islanders side aiming to create separation in the wild card race.
The Islanders currently hold down the first wild card spot in the Eastern Conference but still have an outside chance at finishing in second in the Metro and taking home ice advantage, which for them would be huge in the first round. New York does have some offensive fire power led by John Tavares and have an underrated blue line but they do need to piece it all together heading into the playoffs as they don’t match up well with some of their potential first round matchups and should be hoping they square off with the Rangers. However, tonight their focus is another another blue team and in Columbus they get a matchup that is very winnable and I think they take advantage.