Columbus Blue Jackets vs. Montreal Canadiens Prediction, NHL Odds

Edgar Chaput | Updated Mar 12, 2024

NHL: Toronto Maple Leafs at Montreal Canadiens

On Tuesday two clubs trying to avoid finishing last in the East square off when the Columbus Blue Jackets visit the Montreal Canadiens.

March 12, 2024, 7:00 PM ET
Bell Centre
Puckline +1.5 -250
Moneyline +100
Over / Under o +6
Puckline -1.5 +200
Moneyline -120
Over / Under u +6

Late-season matches are opportunities to find bright spots and try new things in the hopes of better futures. Both Columbus and Montreal come off defeats, the Jackets 2-1 to the Predators on Saturday and the Canadiens 3-2 to the Maple Leafs, also on Saturday.

The NHL odds favour the Canadiens, having priced them at -120 on the moneyline.

Blue Jackets vs. Canadiens NHL Betting Odds

Montreal can head into battle tonight knowing that they play Columbus well, having won four straight meetings. That includes two victories earlier this year, one at home and one away. What might pinch the Habs in this match is their mediocre performances at home. Playing at the Bell Centre is said to bring out the best in teams, and that appears to haunt the Canadiens as they’re only 12-17-3 in front of their supporters this season.

Don’t count out Columbus for some surprise wins down the stretch. In the same week, they downed both the Vegas Golden Knights and the Edmonton Oilers. Moreover, they’ve covered four of their last five opportunities to improve their ATS tally to a pretty good 37-27.

The Canadiens have one thing going for them at this stage of the season. More accurately, betters who want to take a chance on the club have something going for them. With a 41-23 record against the puckline, Montreal is clearly one of the best teams in the NHL at covering spreads. They’ve also covered six of their last seven.

One wonders if the over or the under will connect in this game. Montreal is one of the worst-scoring teams in the league (2.75 goals a game, 27th) whereas Columbus is one of the weakest at defending against goals (3.61 per match, 31st).

Columbus Blue Jackets

Whatever their failings this season, the Blue Jackets aren’t going down without a fight. Following surprise wins over Vegas and Edmonton last week, they played the surging Nashville Predators tough on Saturday afternoon despite the 2-1 loss.

Perhaps the club was still riding its high from the win over the mighty Oilers. Maybe it was the oddly early lunch hour start time. For whatever reason it took about half a period for the hosts to get going. Nashville registered the first 14 shots on goal in the match, thus explaining the ultimate 49-33 discrepancy in their favour. G Daniil Tarasov was excellent all afternoon, repelling 47 shots. Alexandre Texier netted his 10th of the season to tie the game 1-1 in the second period, but that’s all the offence the Jackets would muster despite a strong push late.

Points leaders Johnny Gaudreau and Zach Werenski have been held off the sheet two games in a row.

Montreal Canadiens

Heading into Saturday night’s contest versus age-old rivals the Toronto Maple Leafs, no one in the building believed the Canadiens were the better team. Even so, a chance to trip up a familiar foe was on the table.

To that effect, despite leaving empty-handed, the Canadiens put up a good fight in the 3-2 defeat. For a while, it looked as if Montreal would surprise Toronto, as an excellent breakout and passing allowed Mike Matheson (10th) to open the scoring less than a minute into the match. A prolonged delay due to a glass panel along the boards falling off seemed to steal that momentum away. Toronto settled down and took a 2-1 lead into the third, which is when Alex Newhook (10th) tied the game on the power play. However, John Tavares, suffering a desperate goal drought, got the winner in the crease. A 6-on-4 power play late was the perfect opportunity to tie again but a decidedly muted attack couldn’t connect, hence the loss.

Nick Suzuki is having a fine season, earning nearly one point per game. He has 61 in 64 matches thus far.

NHL Prediction: Who Will Win Blue Jackets vs. Canadiens?