Preview: Columbus at Arizona

When: 8:00 PM  ET, Saturday, December 3, 2016
Where: Gila River Arena, Glendale, Arizona
Matchup Edge
CLB Edge in: ARI
Offense
Defense
Power Play
Penalty Kill
Face Offs
Discipline
Goaltending


The streaking Columbus Blue Jackets are within striking distance of first place in the Metropolitan Division as they prepare to kick off a home-and-home series against the team with the fewest wins in the league. The Blue Jackets pay a visit to the Arizona Coyotes on Saturday before hosting the Pacific Division cellar dwellers in Monday's rematch.

Columbus is 11-2-3 in its last 16 games after Thursday's 3-2 win at Colorado to move within three points of the division-leading New York Rangers with three games in hand. The Blue Jackets are riding a four-game point streak (3-0-1) and are 7-3-3 against Western Conference opponents. Arizona remains stuck on eight wins after consecutive one-goal losses to Pacific rivals Anaheim and Los Angeles. The Coyotes are used to playing in such games, with nine of their last 10 contests decided by one goal.  

TV: 8 p.m. ET, FSN Ohio (Columbus), FSN Arizona Plus

ABOUT THE BLUE JACKETS (13-5-4): While Columbus has been on a roll, the same cannot be said of Boone Jenner, who has been mired in a slump after his breakout 30-goal campaign last season. Jenner scored just his third goal of the season at Colorado, delivering the game-winning tally with just over 11 minutes to play. “He’s done a lot of other things," coach John Tortorella said. "But if we can just get his offense going, then you have a little bit of balance if one of our other lines has an off night.”

ABOUT THE COYOTES (8-11-3): Arizona also received a welcome offensive boost when Martin Hanzal scored a pair of power-play goals in Thursday's 4-3 loss to Los Angeles -- matching his total from his previous 15 games. Tobias Rieder also scored -- his fourth goal in nine games -- and drew praise from coach Dave Tippett. "I see a top-notch, excellent, 200-foot player," Tippett said. "The NHL is a fast league right now and he's a fast player. We've got some guys that should watch him play."

OVERTIME

1. Blue Jackets F Brandon Saad has seven points in his last seven games.

2. Coyotes G Mike Smith is 6-5-2 with a 2.39 goals-against average versus the Blue Jackets.

3. Columbus needs two wins to reach 500.

PREDICTION: Blue Jackets 4, Coyotes 2

Stats and Records

Team Comparison

W/L Strk Home Away Day Night Div
Columbus 13-5-3-1 W2 8-3-1-0 5-2-2-1 1-0-0-0 12-5-3-1 3-0-0-0
Arizona 8-11-3-0 L2 5-5-0-0 3-6-3-0 1-0-0-0 7-11-3-0 4-3-3-0

Last Meeting

Columbus Arizona
Date Away Home Shots Saves PP Shots Saves PP
12/17/15 CLB 7 ARI 5 21 27 0-1 32 14 1-3

Player Stats

Previous Matchup
Total Points Player  
CLB C. Atkinson 3
ARI J. Martinook 2
Goals Player  
CLB C. Atkinson 1
ARI T. Rieder 2
Assists Player  
CLB C. Atkinson 2
ARI M. Boedker 1
Saves Player  
CLB C. McElhinney 27
ARI L. Domingue 8
Season
Total Points Player  
CLB C. Atkinson 21
ARI R. Vrbata 16
Goals Player  
CLB N. Foligno 9
ARI R. Vrbata 7
Assists Player  
CLB A. Wennberg 15
ARI M. Domi 11
Saves Player  
CLB S. Bobrovsky 526
ARI L. Domingue 350

Quickchart Matchup

Columbus Off vs  Arizona Def
3.18 GF
3.14 GA
29.5 Shots
34.4 Shots
15 PP
13 PK
Arizona Off vs  Columbus Def
2.36 GF
2.23 GA
28.7 Shots
29.5 Shots
9 PP
10 PK

Matchup Stats - Full Matchup

Columbus Overall Arizona
13-5-3-1 W/L 8-11-3-0
15-7 ATS 16-6
7-13 O/U 8-11
3.18 Goals For 2.36
2.23 Goals Agnst 3.14
Columbus A/H Arizona
5-2-2-1 W/L 5-5-0-0
7-3 ATS 8-2
2-6 O/U 2-6
2.50 Goals For 2.30
2.10 Goals Agnst 2.70