Free NHL Picks: Profit From A Totals Play On Capitals vs. Avalanche

Dana Lane

Friday, April 1, 2016 4:20 PM UTC

Friday, Apr. 1, 2016 4:20 PM UTC

The Washington Capitals may be focused on resting players rather than getting a meaningless win against the Avalanche. Get my NHL pick right here! 

Washington Capitals vs. Colorado Avalanche
In dropping a 2-1 shootout loss to the Philadelphia Flyers Wednesday the Washington capitals looked like a team that was more worried about getting to the playoff healthy. Braden Holtby will probably not catch Martin Brodeur for all-time single season wins and it looks less likely that Alexander Ovechkin will hit the 50 goal mark. With the President's Trophy in hand I now expect Barry Trotz to have his team focused on the postseason. Holtby would have had to win five straight games to break the record of 50 wins in a season and although he's playing tonight I can't see him starting in five straight. Ovechkin would have to have 6 goals in the last five games to hit the 50 mark. 

Holtby has allowed two or fewer goals in six of his last seven starts. 

When speaking of the Flyers game Trotz talked about the difference in desperation level. That's one of the reasons backing the Caps in the postseason is worrisome for me because they have never had to find their 'desperation level'. You have to wonder if they have one. They seem to have a lack of intensity and this is where great regular season teams lose the Stanley Cup. Nicklas Backstrom was quoted as saying that he thinks the Capitals have a higher level of play. I don't like the word think when backing teams that have nothing to play for. 

Along with their sense of urgency and intensity the Capitals have lost their scoring touch. Over their last three games the Capitals have either not scored or managed just one goal although they've gone 2-1 in that span and 5-1-1 in their last seven. 

The Capitals are healthy but Colorado is still without Nathan MacKinnon who is a top 3 forward. Since his injury March 18th the Avalanche have averaged only 2 goals per game.  


Betting Analysis
Colorado's chances of catching the red-hot Minnesota Wild for the last wild card spot is becoming less likely with every passing game. If the Capitals get ahead early I can see where they would set three up at the blue line and make it a very difficult entry for the Avalanche who is not yet sure if Matt Duchene will make his return. Even with Duchene it will be very difficult for their blue liners to access the offensive zone on a consistent basis as it was against the St. Louis Blues

Colorado managed only 11 shots through the first two periods against the Blues which led their third loss in four games. Couple that will the Avalanche managing only one power play goal in their last 14 opportunities this game smells like an under especially at plus money.

From a trend perspective this game has always been an 'under' play. In their last 20 meetings the 'under' has hit 15 times including eight of 10 in Calgary. I'm confidently going with the under in this NHL pick. Right now the NHL odds are offering an excellent price at +125. @DanaLaneSports 

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Free NBA Pick: Under 5 +125
Best Line Offered: at 5Dimes

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