Washington Capitals (40-21-7) vs Winnipeg Jets (40-23-4)
Connor Hellebuyck (28-18-2) vs Phoenix Copley (14-5-3)
NHL Hockey Sunday March 10 2019 6:00pm Eastern (Capital One Arena)
Line and Odds: Washington -145 Over/Under — 6.5
FREE NHL Score Washington Capitals vs Winnipeg Jets
The Jets finish their four game Metropolitan road trip in Washington in an early Sunday evening contest that means a lot for each teams playoff positioning. Winnipeg most recently slaughtered Carolina 8-1 in their own building and in the middle of their playoff race, adding two goals in the final minute of the third like a bunch of jerks. The Capitals handled their business on Friday, shutting out the Devils 3-0, effectively taking back the division lead from the Islanders and their former coach Barry Trotz. Both teams are looking for their respective division crowns and are trying to secure home ice for at least the first two rounds of the post season.
Washington is catching fire at the right time, sitting on a six game win streak and are winners of 8 of their last 9. They were flirting with a wild card spot for a little while in February but now sit comfortably in the top 3 of the Metro. The Capitals need to win the division as they are behind all top three Atlantic teams and are almost guaranteed to play on the road in the Conference Finals if they make it that far, meaning they don’t want to risk playing on the road any round before then.
The recent winning streak has come at the hands of the usual suspects but has also seen the depth forwards pick up some slack as well. NHL Goal leader Alex Ovechkin has just 2 in the six games but has added 4 assists, making him a PPG player during the stretch. His center-man Nicklas Backstrom has notched 8 points (4 goals 4 assists) during the streak and placed himself in the top 20 for assists this season. Depth winger Andre Burakovsky has potted goals in three straight games, an impressive stretch for a player who has just 11 total on the year.
The Jets performance in Raleigh cannot be understated, they took it to a team that was 12-3-1 before their match-up and scored 8 without their star sniper Patrick Laine tallying a single goal. After a period that saw them lose 5 games in 6 including a loss to the lowly senators and a 7-1 drubbing on the road in Colorado, the Jets have taken 3 of their last 4 outings, only dropping to the league best Lightning in Tampa. Winnipeg lays in the same position as the Capitals as they have the third most points in the conference but hold the top spot in their division. They hold only a one point advantage over the Predators but have three games in hand and need to capitalize off of them.
Winnipeg carries the leagues 5th best power-play going into this game and need to lean on it against a Washington team that sits in the bottom ten of penalty killing.They are converting at a 33% rate over the last four games but Washington has not conceded on the PK in five games, holding opponents to 0-11. New center Kevin Hayes has put up 5 points in his 5 games with the Jets but his points have come in spurts, scoring in just two of the five games. He will be an X factor considering his past with the Rangers and how often he has had to match up with the Caps.
Washington is 4-9 ATS in its last 13 games at home
The total has gone OVER in 5 of Washington’s last 6 games at home
Washington is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games when playing at home against Winnipeg
The total has gone OVER in 5 of Winnipeg’s last 6 games on the road
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Winnipeg’s last 5 games
Winnipeg is 5-10 ATS in its last 15 games
FREE NHL Prediction Winnipeg Jets vs Washington Capitals
This a high octane marquee match up and I expect it to be a game that carries a playoff atmosphere. Both teams need the points and both are riding on exceptional performances. The big question is if the Jets unloaded all their energy and scoring on Friday and if they can bring that same intensity tonight in one of the hardest buildings to travel to in the NHL. Both squads don’t seem to have a huge affinity for stopping goals, ranking 20th and 24th in goals against, so scoring should be in the bunches. Washington has won five in a row in the nation’s capital against the Jets and I find it hard to bet against an east-west streak like that so I will go with the Capitals in what should be a close contest.
PICK: Over 6.5