Squaring off for the final time this year, the Minnesota Wild and the Washington Capitals take the ice at Capital One Arena. NBC Sports Washington will air this East-West matchup, which gets going at 7 p.m. ET on Friday, March 22.
Minnesota Wild at Washington Capitals Odds
Minnesota (+145) is entering this one as the underdog to Washington (-165), and the oddsmakers have put the Over/Under (O/U) at an even 6 goals. If you want to play the game’s total, you’ll be looking at odds of -105 for the over and -115 on the under.
The Capitals are 43-31 straight-up (SU) and have netted moneyline bettors 4.8 units this year. That winning percentage, the best in the Metropolitan Division in this young season, is right in line with the 49-33 record the team managed during last year’s regular season campaign. Of its 74 games this season, 39 have gone over the total, while 32 have gone under and just three have pushed. The team is 21-15 SU at home this year.
Washington has converted on 21.6 percent of its power play chances this season, a mark that places them in the top-10 among NHL teams. On the other hand, its penalty kill is ranked 23rd overall, and it’s successfully killed off 79.0 percent of all penalties.
Washington, as a collective unit, has been whistled for penalties 4.0 times per game overall this season, and 5.4 per game over its last five contests home outings. The team’s had to defend opposition power plays for 12.0 minutes per contest over its last five home games.
Averaging 27.7 saves per game with a .907 save percentage, Braden Holtby (27-26-7) has been the primary option in goal for the Capitals this year. If they, however, choose to give him the night off, Washington may go with Pheonix Copley (17-8-8 record, .906 save percentage, 2.88 goals against average).
Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom will each look to continue their strong seasons for the Capitals. Ovechkin (83 points) has tallied 48 goals and 35 assists and has recorded multiple points in 21 different games this year. Backstrom has 18 goals and 51 assists to his credit and has recorded at least one point in 45 games.
Minnesota has lost 16.1 units for bettors taking the moneyline this year and is currently 34-40 straight up (SU). A total of 38 of its contests have gone under the total, while 29 have gone over and just seven have pushed. As an away team, Minnesota is 19-17 SU.
Minnesota has converted on 20.8 percent of its power play chances this year, a figure that’s right around league average. On the other hand, its penalty kill unit is ranked 17th overall and it’s successfully defended 80.5 percent of all penalties.
Minnesota’s skaters have been whistled for penalties 3.6 times per game this season, and 2.6 per game over their past ten games. The team’s been forced to stave off opponent power plays just 5.8 minutes per game over their last 10 outings.
Devan Dubnyk (.912 save percentage and 2.59 goals against average) has been the primary option in goal for Minnesota. Dubnyk is averaging 25.6 saves per game and owns a 29-32-6 record.
Leading the offensive attack for the visiting Wild will be Zach Parise, who has 26 goals and 32 assists this season.
Minnesota Wild at Washington Capitals Free Picks
Pick: SU Winner – Wild, O/U – Under
- Two of Minnesota’s last ten games have ended in a shootout. The team is 0-2 in those games and 1-4 overall in shootouts this season.
- For both of these clubs, the over has hit in four of their last five outings.
- Minnesota has managed 30.4 shot attempts per game over its last five road games while Washington is averaging 36.8 shots per game over its last five home outings.
- Eight of Washington’s last ten contests have been decided by two or more goals. The team is 6-2 overall in those games.
- Minnesota skaters recorded 16.9 hits per game last season, while the Caps forced 24.2 hits per contest.