Preview: Capitals vs Red Wings
Date: Friday, November 15th 2013
Washington Capitals vs Detroit Red Wings Preview
This is the first of three meetings between the two teams as the Capitals won both match-ups during the 2011-12 season by outscoring the Wings 12-4. But that doesn’t have any significance in today’s game.
As bad as the Capitals and Red Wings have been playing as of late the Caps can still be first in the Metropolitan Division and the Red Wings can be second in the Atlantic Division by the end of the night. I still can’t fully grasp that the Wings are now in the East and in the Atlantic Division. Has not quite settled in just yet.
Washington is just one point behind Pittsburgh for the Metropolitan Division lead although the Penguins have a game in hand and do play tonight as well. The Caps are on a 5-1-1 streak and they will look to extend that tonight against an ageing Wings team.
However, the Capitals will likely be without defenseman Mike Green (lower body). They called up Tyson Strachan from Hershey of the American Hockey League on Thursday, though Green made the trip to Detroit.
Shifting to the other side of the ice – the not so Detroit Rock City – have lost eight of their last 11 games. On top of that the Wings are winless in their past six games at Joe Louis Arena their worst drought at home since 1996-97 – however – five of the losses have come to overtime or shootouts, cushioning the slump.
Henrik Zetterberg and Pavel Datsyuk have combined for 19 of Detroit’s 47 goals and the Red Wings’ average of 2.47 goals per game ranked 21st in the League. But even the Penguins will tell you, it takes more than two super stars to lead a team to victory on offense. The Wings could use Valtteri Filppula right about now…..too bad he’s lighting the lamp down in Florida.
Who’s Hot (besides the girl in the picture above)
Washington’s third line has produced more like a top unit in the past 11 games. Mikhail Grabovski, Joel Ward and Jason Chimera have combined for 14 goals and 30 points in that span.
Zetterberg and Datsyuk have combined for eight goals and 17 points in the past six contests for the Red Wings.
Washington defenseman John Erskine (upper body) has been out since Oct. 28, and Jack Hillen (leg) is expected to be out until at least February.
The Red Wings are missing defenseman Brendan Smith (shoulder) and center Stephen Weiss (groin). They are expected to get No. 2 defenseman Jonathan Ericsson back from an upper-body injury that has kept him out since Oct. 19 against Phoenix.
Washington Capitals – Braden Holtby (confirmed)
Detroit Red Wings – Jimmy Howard (confirmed)
Washington Capitals vs Detroit Red Wings Prediction
Washington has won 5 of their last 7 games and their power play will be key in winning tonight. It seems like anytime the Capitals are a -140 money line favorite or higher they tend to screw me. Not tonight though. They are actually a road underdog and that’s good value for a Capitals team.
This pick will be documented on our overall NHL record.
Washington Capitals +130 to win $130
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