SPORTS CHAT PLACE
The Washington Capitals and the Florida Panthers meet in game two of their NHL playoffs first round series from FLA Live Arena on Thursday night.
The Washington Capitals will be trying to shock the Panthers and emerge with a 2-0 series lead after kicking off the series with a 4-2 win over the Panthers in game one last time out.
Tom Wilson opened the scoring for the Capitals just under four-minutes into the game before Sam Bennett would tie the game at one for Florida with just over two minutes to go in the opening frame.
Claude Giroux would quickly push the Panthers in front in the first minute of the second period, and that lead would hold up all through the second and for the first chunk of the third period before Evgeny Kuznetsov tied the game at two for the Caps. T.J. Oshie restored Washington’s lead just 2:23 later and the Caps would seal the deal, locking the door with an empty-netter from Lars Eller in the final minute to stun Florida and win the opener.
Vitek Vanecek got the win for the Capitals after stopping 30 of the 32 shots he faced in the winning effort while Sergei Bobrovsky took the loss between the pipes for Florida after giving up three goals on 37 shots faced in the loss.
Washington is 1-4 in their last 5 games overall and 1-4 in their last 5 games against a team with a winning record while the over is 11-4 in their last 15 road games. Florida is 44-8 in their last 52 games as a home favorite and 40-14 in their last 54 games overall while the under is 4-1 in their last 5 games against a team with a winning record.
I get the reasoning for backing either side in this one, as Florida’s still rock solid at home and the Capitals have shown the ability to beat the Panthers in their own building this season. However, I’m looking at the over here. The only reason we didn’t hit the over was because Florida went cold in the 3rd period and the Caps iced the game with the empty-netter late. Goals have been the common occurrence between these two teams all season and even in the postseason, I’m expecting no different. Give me the over here.