The sizzling hot Philadelphia Flyers ride into Washington on a seven-game winning streak. The Flyers are a team to keep an eye on as we dive deeper into the regular season and approach the playoffs in April. They used to be a dark horse, but I don’t think we can call them a dark horse at this point? That’s not reserved for a team who are 38-20-7 and have 83 points.
The Flyers are only 3 points within reach of the Capitals and can get 2 points closer tonight. Washington thought that they only had to worry about the Pittsburgh Penguins, but the Flyers look like their main threat now. Philadelphia is getting hot at the perfect time, and have quickly developed into a team that no one will want to play in the playoffs.
If you want to bet on a feel good story coming true, the Flyers are worth a look to win the Stanley Cup. Oskar Lindblom was diagnosed with bone cancer in December. The Flyers have adopted Oskar Strong as their motto in the 2019-20 season. After the initial shock subdued, the Flyers caught fire and aren’t showing any signs of slowing down.
They’ve won 11 of their last 14 games, with their most recent loss taking place on February 15 against the Lightning. That’s the question on everybody’s mind. They might be playing well now, but can they compete and win against the big dogs of the Eastern Conference? The Flyers are hoping that they can stay hot all the way to June, because going cold a month from now will do them no good.
If that’s the case, we should expect an upset in the first-round with the Flyers suffering an early exit in April. The Flyers certainly don’t look ripe for an upset at the moment, though. And if they keep it up, they’re going to be a heavily bet team to win the Stanley Cup. The hottest team going into April tends to get plenty of action at the window to win the Stanley Cup Final. A hot March could likely mean a Metropolitan crown for the Flyers.
The Capitals have looked beatable in the second-half and look ripe for an upset rather than the Flyers. In any event, this should be a good measuring stick for the Flyers on Wednesday night. The Capitals are coming off a 4-3 win over the Minnesota Wild on Tuesday night. It was a big win for the Caps, as they won their third game in four outings, but are winners in just four of their last eleven. Head below for our free Flyers vs. Capitals pick.
Philadelphia Flyers vs. Washington Capitals Betting Odds:
Flyers vs. Capitals Prediction:
The Flyers must keep their foot on the gas pedal. All it could take is a non-competitive loss against the Capitals to lose their confidence. While there’s all this talk about the Flyers, keep in mind that the Capitals are still ahead in the Metropolitan with a record of 40-19-6. They’re the team to beat, and the Flyers have to respect that going into Capital One Arena.
That said, the Capitals have to be aware of how hot the Flyers’ offence has been operating. They haven’t slowed since, and have been producing at a torrid pace since February 8. After a 5-0 loss against the Devils, the Flyers have scored at least 3 goals in eleven straight games, which equates to an average of 4.5 goals per game.
The Capitals surely know what it feels like to get pummeled by the Flyers already. In fact, the game that kick started this monster run by the Flyers was a 7-2 win against the Capitals. Braden Holtby took a beating, as he allowed 7 goals on just 25 shots. Holtby finished with a 0.72 save percentage before getting pulled. He’s been way off the mark in 2019-20 and will hopefully figure it out soon.
The Capitals have been allowing Holtby and Ilya Samsonov to share the crease. Samsonov was playing extremely well earlier in the season, but he’s tailed off, so the Capitals are trying to get somebody going before the playoffs. They would hope that guy is Holtby because he’s the one with playoff experience. 23-year-old Samsonov has none. That said, Jordan Binnington had none going into last season’s postseason.
Holtby owns a 3.12 GAA and 0.898 save percentage on the season. He has allowed at least 3 goals in five straight games. Conversely, Samsonov has a 2.40 GAA and 0.917 save percentage, though he’s given up at least 3 goals in four out of his last six showings. With the Flyers’ offence on fire, the Capitals’ success tonight is likely going to hinge on Ovechkin and their playmakers.
The Flyers have had a lot of issues in the defensive zone on the road this season. Despite allowing an average of 2.85 goals overall on the year, they’ve surrendered 3.61 goals a game on the road. That means home ice advantage in the playoffs would likely be big for the Flyers. Carter Hart is automatic at home, but can be a shaky netminder on the road. Note that he has a 1.67 GAA at home and 3.81 GAA with a 0.857 save percentage as a visitor. That’s night and day. Having scored an average of 3.44 goals per contest at Capital One Arena, the Capitals should be able to exploit the Flyers in this one. We should see a healthy amount of goals tonight in Washington.