Washington Capitals vs. Tampa Bay Lightning Betting Preview

Jose VasquezArticles, Hockey, NHL

The Washington Capitals at Amalie Arena in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Finals. NBC Sports Network will air the matchup, which gets underway at 8 p.m. ET on Sunday, May 13.

Washington Capitals at Tampa Bay Lightning Odds

Washington (+175) is playing the role of underdog to Tampa Bay (-205) and the oddsmakers have set the Over/Under (O/U) at an even 6 goals (-110 for the over, -110 for the under).

The Lightning are 62-31 straight up (SU) and have earned moneyline bettors 11.9 units this season. That winning percentage, ranked first in the league so far this season, is a solid improvement compared to how the team performed during last years regular season (42-40). Through 93 regular season matches, 54 of its games have gone over the total, while 35 have gone under and just four have pushed. This season, the team is 34-14 SU at home.

Tampa Bay’s offensive skaters attempted 32.5 shots per game in the regular season, leading to 3.6 goals per contest (ranked first overall in the NHL). In the postseason, the teams maintaining an average of 31.2 shots on goal 3.4 goals per game.

After producing the third-best power-play unit in the regular season (scoring on 24.4 percent of all chances), the Lightning have been able to score on 26.8 percent of their postseason power play opportunities. Their penalty kill has gone from 75.5 percent in the regular season to 71.4 percent in the playoffs.

Averaging 29.1 saves per game with a .920 save percentage, Andrei Vasilevskiy (52-24-3) has been the top goalkeeper for the Lightning this year. If head coach Jon Cooper chooses to give him a breather, however, the team may turn to Louis Domingue (7-13-13 record, .896 save percentage, 3.35 goals against average).

The Bolts will continue relying on offensive production from Nikita Kucherov and Steven Stamkos. Kucherov (113 points) has tallied 45 goals and 68 assists and has recorded two or more points in 34 different games this year. Stamkos has 31 goals and 66 assists to his name and has recorded a point in 60 contests.

Washington is 58-37 straight up (SU) and has netted 16.3 units for moneyline bettors this season. Through 95 regular season contests, 52 of its games have gone over the total, while 40 have gone under and just three have pushed. Washington’s 27-21 SU as the away team this season.

Washington has converted on 24.1 percent of its power play opportunities this year, a mark that’s good enough for seventh-best in the NHL. On the other hand, its penalty kill unit is ranked 16th overall and it’s successfully killed off 80.0 percent of all penalties.

Washington’s players have been penalized 4.1 times per game this season, 4.0 per game over their last five games total, and 4.0 per game over their last five road outings. The team’s had to stave off opponent power plays just 8.3 minutes per game over their last 10 outings.

Braden Holtby (27.3 saves per game) has been the primary option in the net for Washington. Holtby has 43 wins, 23 losses, and five OT losses to his credit, while registering a .910 save percentage and 2.81 goals against average this year.

Leading the offensive attack for the visiting Capitals will be Alex Ovechkin (58 goals, 46 assists) and Evgeny Kuznetsov (34 goals, 65 assists).

Washington Capitals at Tampa Bay Lightning Free Picks

Prediction: SU Winner – Lightning, O/U – Under

Betting Trends

  • Washington has attempted 29.5 shots per contest overall this season (ranked 31st in the NHL), and 29.3 in its last 10 games.
  • Six of Washington’s last ten games have been decided by two goals or more. The team is 5-1 in those games.