Buffalo Sabres vs. Montreal Canadiens Prediction, NHL Odds

Nik Kowalski | Updated Feb 21, 2024

The Buffalo Sabres and Montreal Canadiens will settle their points tiebreaker on Wednesday when they meet up in Habs territory.

Buffalo
38-37-5-1
AT
February 21, 2024, 7:00 PM ET
Bell Centre
Montreal
30-36-7-7
Puckline -1.5 +170
Moneyline -150
Over / Under o +7
Puckline +1.5 -210
Moneyline +125
Over / Under u +7

Things get a little less dramatic when the tiebreaker is for 13th place in the Eastern Conference, as each team is currently at 52 points with just over 25 games to go.  The 24-27-4 Sabres have lost four of their last six outings and have failed to gain any sort of ground post-All-Star break. Montreal’s doing even, dropping four of their last five and allowing 21 total goals in the four losses with an anomaly 5-0 victory sandwiched in between. 

Puck drop at the Bell Centre gets going at 7 p.m. EST with the Sabres the slightest road favourite at -130 on the moneyline and the total at 6.5 on the NHL odds.

Sabres vs. Canadiens NHL Betting Odds

Buffalo and Montreal have endured some of the strangest home-away splits this season, and on Wednesday they favour the Sabres. Despite being in the 13th in the East, Buffalo is above .500 (12-11-3) on the road this season and below .500 on home ice. Montreal’s been abysmal at home, at least when considering the advantage they should possess. The Canadiens are 11-15-3 at home this season and above .500 on the road. 

Buffalo comes in having won five of their last six road games. Montreal’s 6-14 outright in their last 20 home games. Head-to-head, five of the last six Sabres–Canadiens battles taken place in Montreal have finished over the total. Wednesday’s the last of four meetings this season between Buffalo and Montreal. The Canadiens are 2-1 so far but the Sabres have the only win coming in 2024, a 6-1 victory back on January 4 at that.

Buffalo Sabres

Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen’s been the lone NHL-calibre goalie on Buffalo’s roster this season but even he’s going through it, stopping 10 of 14 shots faced in the Sabres 4-3 loss Monday. The Sabres put up 37 shots in the loss, outshooting their opponent by 23 but still losing. Goaltending’s an issue that’s held Buffalo back for years and that problem doesn’t appear to be going away. As a unit, the three goals Buffalo’s dressed this season have an .898 save percentage.

The Sabres are now starting an NHL record of consecutive seasons (13) missing the playoffs. Their turnaround starts in net, but their top guns need to produce more too. Casey Mittelstadt leads the team with 44 points and J.J. Peterka’s 19 goals are a team high. With March around the corner, Buffalo needs guys like Tage Thompson and Jeff Skinner to elevate their offence.

Montreal Canadiens

Some key Canadiens are reaching career milestones but it’s still not translating to wins. In Montreal’s most recent outing, a 4-3 loss Saturday versus Washington, captain Nick Suzuki extended his point streak to 10 games and 2022 first overall pick Juraj Slafkovsky has a point in eight straight contests. Suzuki’s now up to team highs in both goals (20) and points (53) while Slafkovsky’s up to 30 points on the season — triple the production of his rookie campaign.

It was Jake Allen’s turn Saturday with Montreal’s roulette wheel of goalies, although Allen’s the one that is getting mentioned in upcoming trade rumours. Allen’s been the worst of Montreal’s three goalies this season, but Sam Montembeault should get the nod back in the crease Wednesday. Montembeault’s 12-9-4 this season with a .903 save percentage. 

NHL Prediction: Who Will Win Sabres vs. Canadiens?

NHL Predictions
SportsInteraction