In their first head-to-head matchup of the regular season, the Washington Capitals and the Buffalo Sabres face off at the KeyBank Center in an Eastern Conference showdown. The action will get started at 7 p.m. ET on Tuesday, November 7, and you can witness the game live on NBC Sports Network.
Washington Capitals vs. Buffalo Sabres Odds
Washington is 8-7 straight up (SU) and has lost 1.2 units for bettors taking the moneyline this year. Through 15 regular season outings, nine of its games have gone over the total, while five have gone under and none have pushed. The Caps are 5-4 SU on the road in 2017-18.
Washington has converted on 18.4 percent of its power play opportunities this year, a mark that’s right around league average. On the other hand, its penalty kill is ranked 27th overall, and it’s successfully killed off only 75.8 percent of all penalties.
For the team as a whole, the Caps have been sent to the penalty box 4.9 times per game this season. Last year, that figure was the mark in the league at 4.1 penalties per game. After serving an average of 9.3 penalty minutes per game a year ago, the team has had to kill penalties for a whopping 12.3 minutes per outing this season.
With a .921 save percentage and 29.7 saves per game, Braden Holtby (8-3) has been the top option in goal for Washington this season. Holtby did just play last night, however, so head coach Barry Trotz may choose to rest him and instead turn to Philipp Grubauer (0-5-1 record, .876 save percentage, 4.08 goals against average).
Evgeny Kuznetsov and Alex Ovechkin will both spearhead the attack for the visiting Capitals. Kuznetsov (18 points) has tallied three goals and 15 assists, and has recorded two or more points four times. Ovechkin has 12 goals and five assists to his name, and has notched a point in eight games.
Over on the other bench, Buffalo is 4-10 straight up (SU) and has recorded -6.3 units for moneyline bettors this year. Through 14 regular season matches, eight of its games have gone over the total, while four have gone under and just two have pushed. The team is 1-4 SU at home this year.
The Sabres have converted on just 12.5 percent of their power play opportunities this year, a figure that places them in the bottom overall among NHL teams. On the other hand, its penalty kill is ranked 14th overall, and it’s successfully killed off 81.4 percent of all opponent power plays.
Sabres players have been penalized only 3.4 times per game this season, a number that’s pretty close to the 3.6 penalties per game given up last year. After serving an average of 9.0 penalty minutes per game a season ago the team’s been forced to stave off opponent power plays for only 6.9 minutes per matchup this year.
Robin Lehner has denied 22.4 shots per game as the top option in goal for the Sabres. Lehner has three wins, seven losses, and one OT loss and has registered a mediocre 3.25 goals against average and a poor .896 save percentage this season.
The home team offense will be led by Jack Eichel (four goals, nine assists) and Evander Kane (seven goals, six assists).
Washington Capitals at Buffalo Sabres Free Picks
Predictions: SU Winner – Sabres, O/U – Under
- The over has hit in three of Washington’s last five games.
- The Sabres this season have handed the 11th-most hits per game (21.9).