Last Updated: 2018-06-07
The Washington Capitals will look to hoise the Stanley Cup tonight in Las Vegas when Game 5 on the Stanley Cup Finals take place. The Knights are -143 to win the game and are getting almost 60% of the wagers. The total is 5.5-flat, which is where it opened and nearly three-fourths of the bets are coming in on the over after last game.
Sure, the Capitals and Alex Ovechkin would love to raise the Cup in front of their home fans, but don’t think for a second they wouldn’t like to put this one away tonight. Anybody who bets on Las Vegas for that reason needs to rethink their opinion. While I’m not saying Vegas won’t win, if they do it will because of what they do on the ice, not the Caps giving the game away in order to win at home. The fans will still turn out to greet the team at the airport.
The Capitals have averaged 4.0 goals per game to 2.75 for Vegas in the series, as Fleury has looked human for the first time this postseason. Part of it is he’s facing some tough shots, but he hasn’t made the saves he did in the first few rounds. Washington was 3 for 5 on the powerplay last game, so you can’t lay all the blame on him. But his team did have a 30-23 shot advantage, so a few big saves would have been nice, although many of the Knights’ shots weren’t of the greatest percentage.
With their backs against the wall, have to think the Knights get a little defensive than we’ve seen in this series. It’s what’s gotten them here so far and teams should do what they do best when in that situation. While the Caps have gotten some goals, they’ve also played fair defense and gotten better goaltending from Holtby than the Knights have gotten.
Vegas needs to stay out of the penalty box and has to do a better job on the penalty kill than they did last game, which isn’t an earth shattering revelation. It’s pretty obvious what went wrong for them last time out. Believe they’ll shore up their defensive efforts, as they’ve had an extra day after the travel and will have to go against the grain in this one and take the under 5.5.
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The Las Vegas Knights find themselves in unfamiliar waters tonight when they visit the Washington Capitals and are down 2-1 in the Stanley Cup Finals. The Capitals are -130 and the total is 5.5-under (-125).
There really isn’t a whole to be said about these two teams than what’s been said already, so will try to look for a few new things, taking into account what has transpired the first three games.
The Capitals outshot the Knights for the first time this series last game and having four powerplays to two for Vegas played a part in that. Neither team was able to convert on their opportunities with the man advantage and are now a combined 3 for 15, which is slightly below their season averages offensively and a little higher than the two teams allow defensively.
The Knights were 8-3 during the year after losing back-to-back games, while the Capitals were 18-17 after winning back-to-back games. While the Knights had an under tendency in that spot, going 4-7, the Capitals were 20-12-1 to the over, so a difference in philosophy.
Vegas was held to 22 shots on goal last game and have rebounded nicely after being held to that few in the playoffs, coming back and defeating the Sharks 7-0 and beating the Jets 3-1. The Knights were held to 22 or fewer shots twice during the regular season and split their next game, but for the four games, Vegas is averaging 32 shots per game, so expect to see more pucks thrown at the net.
The Caps were held to 26 shots for the second straight game and were 10-7 after being held to 27 or fewer in back-to-back games and 9-8 in totals, but did close with a 7-2 over run.
While the Capitals can play defense, which is what has given them the lead in the series, they can also score and wouldn’t be surprised to see Washington push the tempo a little bit in this one, as they’ll look to get the Knights out of their comfort zone. Vegas may be a little more willing to get up-and-down the ice after losing the last two games and keeping the Caps from getting off too many shots.
Think this one is going to sneak over the total, as there’s too much offensive talent on both teams to continue to see 4 and 5 goal games and believe it’s going to show tonight.
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