The series is now all ties up as home-ice advantage shifts to Washington as the Capitals host the Florida Panthers for game three in this matinee matchup. After giving up a 4-2 upset loss in game one, the Panthers bounced back for game two and secured a 5-1 victory. Who walks away with a lead in the series today? It’s time to continue our NHL odds series with a Panthers-Capitals prediction and pick.
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Here are the Panthers-Capitals NHL Odds, Courtesy of FanDuel
NHL Odds: Panthers-Capitals Odds
Florida Panthers: -1.5 (+126) (-194 ML)
Washington Capitals: +1.5 (-152) (+160 ML)
Over: 6.5 (-132)
Sub: 6.5 (+108)
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Why The Panthers Can Cover The Spread / Win
The Florida Panthers finished the season as the leagues ‘best regular-season team, allowing them to win the Presidents’ Trophy, the first in franchise history. However, there are a lot of superstitions that come with the Presidents’ Trophy as a hockey team. They lost game one to the Capitals and people started to panic, thinking the curse of the President’s Trophy was clearly still in effect. But the Cats bounced back in game two and showed the league what they’s made of. They’ll look to carry that momentum into game three and take down the Capitals in their own barn.
The Panthers are healthy, which is great news for the playoffs, but struggling on special teams as the Capitals have scored two shorthanded goals so far this season. Starting goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky will likely get another start today as he’s been playing decently well, with just a few hiccups here and there in game one and then shutting the door in game two.
Why The Capitals Can Cover The Spread / Win
The Washington Capitals started off hot, ready to win battles in this series. They come out the gates swinging, taking game one, then lost all momentum after dropping game two. The biggest issue for the Caps is their goaltending situation. Neither Vitek Vanecek nor Ilya Samsonov had secured a starting spot during the regular season, but Vanecek has found the starting nod so far this series. However, after Vanecek gave up five goals in game two and then got subbed out in the third period, Samsonov’s starting probabilities are starting to increase, maybe allowing fans to see a change of pace in net today. The Caps definitely have the star power to win some games, but the true test is going to be stopping the Panthers from scoring first.
Final Panthers-Capitals Prediction & Pick
Playoff hockey is all about “anything can happen,” which is very true. However, most of the picks come from a home-ice advantage where the playoff crowds are on a different level of intensity. Sure, the Capitals are back at home, and it’s a day game, but I like the Panthers in this one. I think losing game one put a little fire under the Panthers and they’ll take that momentum into this game as well. In fact, I would not be surprised if the Panthers flat-out swept from this point on. I really do not like the goaltending situation in Washington and until that gets figured out, give me the Panthers on the puck line, for the sake of value.
Final Panthers-Capitals Prediction and Pick: Panthers -1.5 (+126)