Washington Capitals (28-14-3) at New Jersey Devils (23-12-8)
The Washington Capitals look to stay red hot as they take to the road to face off against the New Jersey Devils who have been reeling hard over the last two weeks.
The Capitals seem to have their stride and are starting to look like the regular season juggernauts we have come to expect and with a victory on Thursday night the Caps can move to 7-1 in their last eight contests and jump into the mix for top spot in the Eastern Conference. The Capitals have had some issues on the blue line this season as they struggle with speed but their offense is so strong that it has carried them through a ton of games so far and if they can add a piece or two at the deadline they could very well form a roster good enough to finally break through and qualify for the Eastern Conference final. The Caps are 7-3 in their last 10 games against the Metro and will likely turn to Braden Holtby to improve that mark as he will face off against Corey Schneider who remains a work horse in the New Jersey crease.
The Devils are in a slump and are starting to look more like the group that some expected to see this season as they don’t have a ton of offensive depth and if Corey Schneider is having an off night the Devils are in trouble. New Jersey has been playing well on home ice but their recent road trip dropped them to a 1-6 mark in their last seven contests and against a Capitals side that is playing their best hockey of the season it should make for a competitive game and is one at the moment that doesn’t have a line on it yet. New Jersey has been downright awful in this series though as the Caps have won 14 of the last 17 meetings and with New Jersey slumping to a 6-20 mark in their last 26 Thursday games this doesn’t shape up to be an overly optimistic night for them.
The Caps are 4-1 in their last five following a win and 4-11 in their last 15 playing on three or more day’s rest while the Devils are 7-18 in their last 25 against the Metro and 0-7 in their last seven home games against Washington. The Caps are rolling while New Jersey is not and while the line is not out I am confident the Caps will be a favourite and will take advantage.