Pittsburgh Penguins at Columbus Blue Jackets - 3/12/20 NHL Picks and Prediction

Pittsburgh Penguins at Columbus Blue Jackets - 3/12/20 NHL Picks and Prediction Photo by Russell LaBounty-USA TODAY Sports

Pittsburgh Penguins (40-23-6) at Columbus Blue Jackets (33-22-15)

NHL Hockey: Thursday, March 12, 2020 at 7:00 pm (Nationwide Arena)

The Line: Columbus Blue Jackets +127 / Pittsburgh Penguins -140 --- Over/Under: 5.5 Click Here for the Latest Odds

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The Pittsburgh Penguins and Columbus Blue Jackets meet Thursday in NHL action at the Nationwide Arena.

The Pittsburgh Penguins need a win after splitting their last six games. The Pittsburgh Penguins are averaging 3.2 goals per game and are scoring on 20.3 percent of their power play opportunities. Bryan Rust leads Pittsburgh with 27 goals, Evgeni Malkin has 48 assists and Kris Letang has 172 shots on goal. Defensively, the Pittsburgh Penguins are allowing 2.9 goals per game and are killing 82.4 percent of their opponents power plays. Matt Murray has given up 105 goals on 1,033 shots faced and Tristan Jarry has allowed 72 goals on 949 shots. The Pittsburgh Penguins have allowed three or less goals in 17 of their last 25 games.

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The Columbus Blue Jackets need a win after losing seven of their last 10 games. The Columbus Blue Jackets are averaging 2.6 goals per game and are scoring on 16.8 percent of their power play opportunities. Oliver Bjorkstrand leads Columbus with 21 goals, Pierre-Luc Dubois has 30 assists and Seth Jones has 126 shots on goal. Defensively, the Columbus Blue Jackets are allowing 2.6 goals per game and are killing 81.2 percent of their opponents power plays. Joonas Korpisalo has given up 89 goals on 1,007 shots faced and Elvis Merzlikins has allowed 70 goals on 892 shots. The Columbus Blue Jackets have allowed three or less goals in 16 of their last 23 games.

The Penguins are 15-6 in their last 21 games playing on 1 days rest, 2-5 in their last 7 road games and 3-8 in their last 11 overall. The Blue Jackets are 2-5 in their last 7 home games, 1-7 in their last 8 games as an underdog and 3-12 in their last 15 overall. The over is 4-0-1 in Penguins last 5 overall. The under is 4-1 in Blue Jackets last 5 overall. The Penguins are 36-17 in the last 53 meetings.

The Pittsburgh Penguins aren't playing well enough over these last two weeks to be throwing these prices around on the road, and beating up on New Jersey doesn't move the needle much for me. Yes, the Columbus Blue Jackets have their struggles as well, but they're also consistent defensively and that's enough to keep them in games nightly and pull out some sweet underdog victories. Even with all of their losses, the Columbus Blue Jackets are a win or two away from being profitable on the season. Give me the home underdog in the Columbus Blue Jackets.

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Randy’s Pick Columbus Blue Jackets +127

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The pick in this article is the opinion of the writer, not a PickDawgz site consensus.