The NHL season is a ridiculously tough, incredibly long 82-game grind where only the best teams survive to move on and fight it out for the Stanley Cup. As we head into the final few weeks of the regular season, it’s natural to start thinking about the match-ups and how things might play out once the postseason begins. As we have seen so many times in the past, regular season success is no guarantee of the same level of success in the postseason.
The President’s Trophy, which goes to the team with the best regular season record in the NHL, was introduced in the 1985-86 season, and since that time, only 8 teams have won that trophy and the Stanley Cup in the same season. The Tampa Bay Lightning will be looking to make it number 9, as they are almost certainly assured of the best record in the league. They will head into Wednesday night with another big game on the docket, as they head into Washington to face the Capitals. The Lightning is favored by 1 ½, with the O/U set at 6 ½.
Lightning vs Capitals NHL Betting Lines & Game Analysis
#NHLTonight interview here: https://t.co/ROVwB0XIfD pic.twitter.com/TsFlVo3dDr— NHL Network (@NHLNetwork) 20 de marzo de 2019
- When: Wednesday, March 20 at 7:30 PM EST
- Where: Capital One Arena, Washington
- TV: NBCSN
- Live Stream: NHL.tv
- NHL Betting Lines: Tampa Bay Lightning -140 (Total 6.5)
Why bet on the Tampa Bay Lightning?
With 116 points from 73 games, the Tampa Bay Lightning are leaps and bounds ahead of every other team in the NHL this season. With just 9 games left for them to play this season, there is very little left to accomplish, other than getting to the end of the season without picking up any major injuries. They are not yet starting to rest guys, though, as they look determined to finish strong.
The Lightning comes into this one having won 5 in a row and 8 of their last 10. They are 25-7-2 on the road and have a +96 goal differential, which is really quite staggering. The Lightning has won both games against the Capitals this season, outscoring them 10-5 in those two meetings. On the road, Tampa is just 14-20 ATS.
- Goals: 3.93
- Shots: 32.32
- PP/PK Percentage: 28.51
- Goals: 2.62
- Shots: 32.01
- PP/PK Percentage: 14.29
Why bet on the Washington Capitals?
The Washington Capitals will certainly fancy their chances on home ice, but let’s not forget that Tampa has now won 8 of their last 9 games on opposition ice. That aside, the Capitals have still been very good in their own building, going 21-9-5 on home ice.
The Capitals are very much in the hunt to once again win the Metropolitan Division, but they have a fight on their hands coming down the stretch. Washington has the lead right now, but it’s a slender 2-point margin over the New York Islanders, so there is very little margin for error in the final stretch of games. Given that there is a strong possibility that these two might meet in the postseason, the Capitals would love to win here and avoid the regular season sweep.
- Goals: 3.45
- Shots: 30.27
- PP/PK Percentage: 21.70
- Goals: 3.10
- Shots: 31.77
- PP/PK Percentage: 20.00
Lightning vs Capitals NHL Betting Trends
- Tampa Bay is 5-12 ATS in its last 17 games when playing Washington
- Tampa Bay is 8-1 SU in its last 9 games on the road
- The total has gone OVER in 4 of Tampa Bay’s last 5 games on the road
- Washington is 4-1 ATS in its last 5 games at home
- Washington is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games at home
- The total has gone OVER in 5 of Washington’s last 7 games at home
Expert Pick & Final Score Prediction for Lightning vs Capitals
It is never really a good idea to bet against the Tampa Bay Lightning this season, but I think that is exactly what I am going to do. If you want to play it a little safer, take the Capitals ATS, but I am on them to win a close one.
Score: Tampa Bay Lightning 2 – Washington Capitals 3