According to NHL betting odds the Flyers are a -130 money line home favorite and the posted total is 5.0. The Flyers have won 5 of the last 6 meetings between these two clubs. The home team has won the last 4 in this series, and 19 of the last 26 played in Philadelphia have gone over the total.
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Searching for an Answer in Washington
The Capitals had high expectations entering the season. I’m not implying that they eventually can’t be met, but at the present time they’ve been the model of inconsistency. They opened the season losing 5 of their first 7, then won 3 in a row, and followed that up by losing their last 2-games. Tonight will mark the last game of a 5-game road trip that began with the first 4 being played in the western Canada provinces. They began the trip with a 5-4 overtime win versus Winnipeg, and followed that up by defeating Edmonton 4-1. They dropped the last 2 versus Calgary and Vancouver. The Capitals did get a break in the scheduling as they enter tonight playing with 3-days rest. The Capitals special teams play has been excellent as they’re 5th in the NHL on the power play, and 2nd in the league with their penalty killing. Unfortunately they’ve been terrible at even strength, and the goaltending has been less than stellar. Both Braden Holtby and Michael Neuvrith have an identical 3.07 GAA which leaves much to be desired.
Bring Me Back to the Old Days
The proud Flyers franchise has fallen on some recent hard times. After failing to qualify for the playoffs a season ago they’ve began this season with a dismal 3-8 start. The major concern at the moment, besides lack of wins, is the Flyers ineptitude offensively. Philadelphia currently ranks 28th in the NHL averaging just 1.8 goals per game. The power play is converting at an abysmal 11.6% rate. On a positive note the penalty killing has been superb ranking 6th best in the NHL. You can’t fault the Flyers #1 goaltender Steve Mason who has been terrific to start the year. Mason has a solid 2.25 GAA and an excellent .928 save percentage in 9 starts. Free agent acquisition Ray Emery has been disappointing in his 2 starts going 0-2 with a lofty 4.04 GAA, and a horrible .873 save percentage.
I know that the Capitals have had an underachieving start to the season but this money line looks to be a bit askew. There’s no value to playing the Flyers as a -130 favorite versus any team right now, let alone one who is capable of going on a long winning streak at any time. My lean for my NHL pick here is with the road underdog.
NHL Pick: Flyers +110 over the Capitals