The Vegas Golden Knights (41-31-5) have played with fire long enough and desperately need a home victory against the Washington Capitals (43-23-10) on Wednesday or their playoff chances could go up in smoke. The Capitals vs Golden Knights prediction has the visitors as a much better team and fresh off a road upset of the Colorado Avalanche as solid underdogs on Monday.
Capitals vs Golden Knights Odds & Analysis
With only five games left in the regular season for Vegas, the team is on the verge of missing out on the postseason for the first time in franchise history. An embarrassing 3-2 loss to the New Jersey Devils as massive -330 home favorites on Monday has put the Golden Knights on the brink of elimination while their opponent continues to be the best road team in the NHL after upsetting the Avalanche as +160 road dogs on the same day.
Both teams have similar records in their last 10 games (7-3 for Washington and 6-3-1 for Vegas), but the desperation factor for the hosts has bettors taking them in early betting.
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Capitals Still Looking To Improve Playoff Positioning Down The Stretch
Washington has known it will be in the postseason for a while, but the team’s recent hot play has put it in position to rise in the standings for a better spot than the last wild card.
The Capitals find themselves just three points behind the Boston Bruins for the top wild card and within a point of the Pittsburgh Penguins for third place in the Metropolitan Division with one game in hand.
So this game means a lot to them and would put them ahead of the Penguins if they can pull off the win. That is certainly doable too considering Washington owns the league’s top road mark at 24-8-5 and Vegas is struggling.
Golden Knights Running Out Of Time As Competitors Rise To Occasion
Vegas trails the Los Angeles Kings by five points for third place in the Pacific Division with one game in hand and faces comparable competition in the Western Conference wild-card race, sitting six behind the Nashville Predators and four behind the Dallas Stars.
In other words, there is virtually no wiggle room for the Golden Knights at this point – this is truly a must-win situation for them. Vegas has lost its last two games, and a third consecutive defeat would be devastating for its playoff chances.
The Capitals vs Golden Knights prediction looks more bleak for the hosts here after the Kings won on Tuesday and the Vancouver Canucks got a point in a shootout loss to pull even with Vegas in the standings.
Capitals vs Golden Knights Pick & Insights
Capitals: Keys To Victory
Washington still has a mental edge over Vegas dating back to the 2018 Stanley Cup Finals, as those remaining players from the opposition remember how their storybook season as an expansion team ended with a thud. In fact, Alex Ovechkin hoisted the Cup at T-Mobile Arena after winning Game 5 of that championship series, and he will be reminiscing about that feeling in this spot as he and his teammates continue to chase another title. Their road record alone makes them a Cup contender this year and should make this game closer to a pick’em if not for how badly the Golden Knights need a victory.
Golden Knights: Keys To Victory
Vegas would figure to need Logan Thompson in net to pick up a crucial win, although Robin Lehner earned his lone shutout of the year at Washington back on January 24. Lehner made 34 saves in his best performance of the season, and the Golden Knights will likely need a similar effort from him or Thompson if they are going to keep their slim postseason hopes alive. Goaltending and defense have been sore spots for backers of Vegas who thought this team had turned the corner recently. That will be the key again if you are taking the hosts with your Capitals vs Golden Knights pick.
Odds Shark’s Computer Capitals vs Golden Knights Prediction: Capitals +110
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