We’re officially down to the final two weeks of the 2021-22 NHL season. Although most playoff spots have been claimed, the seeding is still up in the air, which is why remaining matchups like Monday’s Washington Capitals vs Colorado Avalanche game are still important.
The Capitals enter the contest as the Eastern Conference’s second Wild Card team with a 42-23-10 record. They’re only three points back of the Pittsburgh Penguins for the Metropolitan Division’s No. 3 seed, which is why an upset win over the Avs on the road is crucial.
On the other hand, the Avalanche continue to be the NHL’s top club with a 55-14-6 record. Currently in a battle with the Florida Panthers for the President’s Trophy, a victory over the Capitals would go a long way for Colorado in its quest.
Here’s a look at everything you need to know — from betting odds to the best bet — for tonight’s Capitals vs Avalanche game.
Washington Capitals vs. Colorado Avalanche Matchup Info and Betting Odds
- Game Matchup: Washington Capitals (42-23-10, 94 points, 4th in Metropolitan Division) vs. Colorado Avalanche (55-14-6, 116 points, 1st in Central Division)
- Venue & Location: Ball Arena (Denver, Colorado)
- Date: Monday, April 18, 2022
- Time: 9 p.m. ET
- How to Watch Capitals vs. Avalanche: NHL Network
- Moneyline: Washington Capitals +176, Colorado Avalanche -216
- Total: OVER 6.5 (-120), UNDER 6.5 (-102)
- Puck Line: Washington Capitals +1.5 (-142), Colorado Avalanche -1.5 (+118)
Odds are via FanDuel Sportsbook.
Capitals Look to Keep Offensive Ball Rolling
The Capitals have had their fair share of highs and lows throughout the 2021-22 NHL season. While they’ve occasionally struggled to generate offense at times, that hasn’t been the case in recent weeks.
The Capitals are 5-1-0 in their last six games, having outscored their opponents by an average score of 5.7 to 3.5. If that wasn’t impressive enough, they’ve also scored a whopping 20 goals in their last three games combined.
Although the forwards have been contributing, it’s been defeseman John Carlson that’s led the way for Washington. The 32-year-old veteran has a team-leading 12 points in the last six games, with four of those points coming on the power play.
Besides that, five other Capitals players have played at point-per-game paces in the last six games, including Alexander Ovechkin, who leads his teammates with five goals.
At the end of the day, the Capitals will need their top players, like Carlson and Ovechkin, to make an impact against a heavyweight like the Avalanche. Colorado has four complete lines and Washington’s stars can’t afford to take the night off.
Goaltending has been a concern, though. While Ilya Samsonov is 3-1-0 in his last four starts, he has a 3.45 goals-against average (GAA), .880 save percentage (SV%) and was even pulled in his last start against the Toronto Maple Leafs.
In terms of betting trends, the total has hit the over in 16 of the Capitals’ last 19 games. With how well theirs and the Avalanche’s offense have looked this season, it wouldn’t be surprising if tonight’s game was a high-scoring event.
Another trend worth keeping an eye on is the fact that Washington has succeeded against Colorado in their recent meetings. The Capitals are 11-2 straight up in their last 13 games against the Avalanche, leaving time to tell if that success will continue.
Avalanche Enter Game Searching for Tenth Straight Win
It goes without saying that the Avalanche have been, arguably, the best team in the NHL this year from start to finish. If anyone had their doubts, Colorado could surely erase them all if it beats Washington or its 10th straight victory.
Everything’s been going right for the Avalanche over their last nine games. They’ve outscored opponents 40-22 over that stretch. Their power playing is clicking at a whopping 37.5%.
Nathan MacKinnon has been a great pick for player props during his team’s winning streak. He has 14 points in his last eight games (nine of which are goals) and could continue that success after notching 18 points in 14 career games against the Caps.
The Avalanche have an offensively dynamic defenseman of their own in Cale Makar. After scoring nine points in as many games, it’ll be interesting to see how he matches up head-to-head against Carlson.
Things are also boding well for the Avalanche due to the Capitals’ recent goaltending struggles. Colorado has scored a combined 19 goals in its last three games and unless Samsonov or Vitek Vanecek stand on their head, it could get ugly real quick.
The Avalanche’s recent betting trends also point towards tonight’s game ending with a lot of goals. The total has hit the over in four of their last six games, as well as in six of their last eight matchups against the Capitals.
If that wasn’t convincing enough, the total has also hit the over in 11 of the Avalanche’s last 15 games against Metropolitan Division opponents.
Washington Capitals vs Colorado Avalanche Prediction and Best Bets
In what should be a high-scoring affair, I’m picking the Colorado Avalanche to win their 10th straight game.
At the end of the day, the Avalanche are the more complete, well-round team compared to the Capitals. Colorado is also more secure between the pipes, which could end up being an issue for Washington down the stretch.
As for the best bet, it’s hard not taking the total hitting over 6.5 at -120 odds. After all, the Capitals and Avalanche have combined for 39 goals in their respective last three games. I’d be shocked if they don’t combine for at least seven tonight.
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