Capitals and Penguins Looking for Consistency
The Pittsburgh Penguins and the Washington Capitals will meet on Wednesday at Capital One Arena. The Penguins matchup on the road with the reigning Stanley Cup champions may not be a bad thing given their ongoing struggles overall and at home.
Pittsburgh has stumbled badly after completing a perfect four-game road trip through Canada. The Pens have dropped four in a row (0-3-1) entering tonight.
TV: 7:30 p.m. ET, NBC Sports Network, TVA, Sportsnet
LINE: Capitals -123; O/U: 6.5 Under -113.
Team captains and superstars Sidney Crosby and Alex Ovechkin going head-to-head is always a headline attraction. The Penguins are more concerned by their recent slump. It culminated with back-to-back losses at home by a 10-1 margin.
"It's not a good feeling when you're in these types of situations, but we have to rely on one another to get out of it," Pittsburgh coach Mike Sullivan told reporters. "We believe we have what it takes to be a very good team in the league."
Ovechkin helped Washington end a two-game skid of its own. They scored a late goal to put the icing on a 4-2 win over Connor McDavid and the Edmonton Oilers on Monday night.
It will mark the first meeting between the Metropolitan Division rivals since the Penguins edged the defending Stanley Cup champion Capitals 7-6 in overtime on Oct. 4.
The Penguins are 6-4-3 on the NHL Season. Pittsburgh has yet to lose in regulation away from home. They pumped in 23 goals in its dominating four-game road trip. They have been limited to six goals during its current slide. That includes back-to-back drubbings by Toronto and New Jersey.
The Penguins are 2-for-19 on the power play in the past five games.
The Capitals are also 6-4-3 on the season. Washington received a boost from its newly configured fourth line to jump-start the win over Edmonton. They received goals from Jakub Vrana and Devante Smith-Pelly within the first six minutes of the game.
Vrana was demoted to the fourth line after struggling in the previous game. He was joined by Travis Boyd, who collected a pair of assists in his season debut.
Washington has yet to win back-to-back games this season.
Ovechkin is tied for eighth on the all-time list with 234 power-play goals - two behind Mario Lemieux.
PREDICTION: Capitals 3, Penguins 2
NHL Betting Odds & Trends
|Pittsburgh is 1-4 ATS in its last 5 games|
|Pittsburgh is 1-4 SU in its last 5 games|
|Pittsburgh is 4-1 SU in its last 5 games on the road|
|The total has gone OVER in 16 of Pittsburgh's last 24 games on the road|
|Pittsburgh is 1-5 ATS in its last 6 games when playing Washington|
|Pittsburgh is 2-4 SU in its last 6 games when playing Washington|
|The total has gone UNDER in 8 of Pittsburgh's last 12 games when playing Washington|
|The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Pittsburgh's last 6 games when playing on the road against Washington|
|Washington is 3-7 ATS in its last 10 games|
|The total has gone OVER in 6 of Washington's last 8 games|
|Washington is 1-4 ATS in its last 5 games at home|
|Washington is 7-3 SU in its last 10 games at home|
|The total has gone OVER in 6 of Washington's last 8 games at home|
|Washington is 5-1 ATS in its last 6 games when playing Pittsburgh|
|Washington is 4-2 SU in its last 6 games when playing Pittsburgh|
|The total has gone UNDER in 8 of Washington's last 12 games when playing Pittsburgh|
|The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Washington's last 6 games when playing at home against Pittsburgh|
Pittsburgh home to Arizona Saturday, November 10
Washington home to Columbus Friday, November 9
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