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Copley Set to Make Second Career NHL Start for the Caps

Washington Capitals goaltender Pheonix Copley (1) warms up on October 3, 2018, at the Capital One Arena in Washington, D.C. prior to the opening night game against the Boston Bruins. The Washington Capitals defeated the Boston Bruins, 7-0.

The Washington Capitals have scored a total of 18 goals while earning five points in their initial three contests and will look to keep filling the back of the net on the road against the New Jersey Devils on Thursday. Sportsbooks opened the Caps as slight -115 road favorites with a total of 5.5.

SHARK BITES
  • The Capitals are 13-2 SU in their last 15 games vs the Devils.
  • The total has gone OVER in six of the Devils’ last eight games at home (avg. combined score: 6.13).
  • The total has gone OVER in the Capitals’ last five games (avg. combined score: 8.4).

Capitals vs Devils Game Center

Capitals are getting contributions from all over right now

The Caps, who tallied 13 times over their first two games before getting limited to five against Vegas, saw captain Alex Ovechkin score twice vs the Golden Knights to double his season total. Evgeny Kuznetsov registered a goal and three assists for Washington in that game, while Nicklas Backstrom scored his first goal of the campaign in the win over Vegas while adding an assist. Washington has allowed only two goals in its two wins.

After posting a 5-2 triumph over Edmonton in Sweden on Saturday, the Devils return to New Jersey to continue what’s technically a five-game homestand. Kyle Palmieri and Travis Zajac scored two goals apiece in the victory vs the Oilers while reigning Hart Trophy winner Taylor Hall was kept off the scoresheet by his former team. Palmieri ended the 2017-18 campaign by registering four goals and four assists over his final seven contests and has picked up right where he left off so far in the new campaign.

Can the Caps cash yet another OVER?

Due to their high-scoring ways, the Capitals have been OVER machines to start the season. Each of Washington’s first three games has eclipsed the closing total. The OVER is also 4-1 in the past five meetings between the Capitals and Devils with an average combined score of 7.3 goals, and the OVER is 6-2 in the Devils’ last eight at home with an average combined score of 6.1 goals.

Capitals turning to backup Copley

Keith Kinkaid and Pheonix Copley are slated to get the start between the pipes for the Devils and Caps, respectively. Kinkaid is 1-0-0 so far this season, getting the win over the Oilers while allowing two goals on 19 shots. Last season, Kinkaid went 26-10-3 with a 2.77 goals-against average and .913 save percentage while filling in admirably for the injured Cory Schneider.

Copley is making his first start for the Capitals. The American has played in only two NHL games – both for the St. Louis Blues – and hasn’t seen any action since 2016-17. In Copley’s lone NHL start, he allowed six goals on 35 shots.

My pick: take the OVER

The OVER in this game looks incredibly appealing for a number of reasons. The Capitals’ red-hot OVER pace makes them a threat to go above totals on their own, while Copley might be in tough in what’s only his second career big-league start. I’m surprised the number didn’t open at 6, so take the OVER 5.5 and run.

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