You can start your Super Bowl Sunday with some NHL action as the Los Angeles Kings visit the Washington Capitals on NBC. The Kings are battling just to make the playoffs in the Western Conference while the Capitals have the best record in the Eastern Conference. This has been a good series for the Kings as they have taken 8 of the last 10 meetings and they have won 6 of the last 9 in Washington.
This war on the ice will go down Sunday, February 5, 2017, at 12 p.m. ET at the Verizon Center. The game will be televised live on NBC.
We'll have NHL odds at BookMaker.eu available for this and every game on the NHL Sunday schedule.
This is not a great spot for the Kings as they are playing the second half of a back-to-back as they were in Philadelphia on Friday and this game on Sunday is a matinee. The Kings are 5-5 in the last ten back-to-backs. Los Angeles was just 11-16 in their first 27 road games with just 6 going over, 16 going under with 5 pushes.
The Capitals are in the same scheduling spot as they also played on Saturday as they were in Montreal. The concern with the Capitals is that they are just 3-7 in the last ten back-to-backs. Washington was 19-6 in their first 25 home games with 10 going over, 11 going under with 4 pushes.
The Kings are not a high scoring team as they average just 2.5 goals per game and they are not that good on the power play at just 19th in the league at 17.4%. The Kings make their living on defense as they are 5th in the league allowing just 2.4 goals per game and they are 9th in penalty killing at 82.9%. The Kings are hoping to get Tyler Toffoli back soon. He is one of their top scorers and his return should boost the power play.
The Capitals are 13th in the league on the power play at 20.5% and they are 5th in goals per game at 3.2 per contest. They are 4th in the league in penalty killing at 84.7% and they lead the league in fewest goals allowed at just 2.1 per contest.
The Kings are still without Jonathan Quick which means Peter Budaj plays almost every game. He is 23-17 with a 2.06 goals against average and he has played very well in place of Quick.
The Capitals are trying to give starter Braden Holtby a little rest as backup Philipp Grubauer played the first game after the All-Star break. Holtby is still the clear number one and his numbers are excellent as he is 24-12 with a 1.96 goals against average.
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The teams split their two meetings last season with each team winning at home. The Kings won 4-3 in Los Angeles while the Capitals won 3-1 in Washington. The teams have split their last six in Washington with three of the last four going under the total.
The Capitals are going to be favored in this one and they have most of the edges. Both teams will be playing with no rest and even if the Capitals decide to go with their backup goalie, Grubauer has played very well this season. The Kings have no such luxury as they either go with Budaj in this matinee or they go with a backup like Zatkoff who has been awful this season. I will lay the price and take the Capitals to win this one at home.
This should also be a low scoring game as the Kings have no chance to be competitive if they open things up. The trends also point to a low scoring contest so I will play the game under the total.
NHL Odds: Capitals 3, Kings 1
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