Rematch time in Washington D.C. tonight, as the Vegas Golden Knights head to Capital One Arena to play their opponents from the Stanley Cup Final, the Washington Capitals. The Golden Knights met their match in that series, with their magical inaugural season coming to an abrupt ending against the Capitals. In what people expected all season from the expansion team, the Knights were severely outmatched by the talented Capitals.
They were the only thing between them and winning a Stanley Cup in their first-year as a team and the Caps made sure that history wasn’t going to be made. The Caps dumped the Knights in five games to hoist the Cup. Ovechkin waited a while to be able to do that and he savoured the win all summer long. The Golden Knights will hope to get some revenge tonight, but the start of the year hasn’t been so smooth for them.
The only time Vegas ran into a drought last season was against the Capitals in the Final. During the regular season they just kept winning, despite hurdles like the Marc-Andre Fleury injury. They ended the year losing and they’ve started the 2018-19 year out with some struggles. If they think it’s going to be as easy as last season they will have another thing coming.
Like a new quarterback who succeeded out of the gate and then faltered later in their careers, teams have a bunch of tape on this team now. Nothing should come as much of a surprise to their competition this season. Don’t discount the loss of James Neal either. Neal was a leader in Vegas more than anything. Max Pacioretty is not a player who can replicate that. Live I’ve said previously, I see the Knights going to the playoffs but they’re going to have to break a sweat and work for it. Head below for our free Golden Knights vs. Capitals pick.
Vegas Golden Knights vs. Washington Capitals Pick
The Golden Knights are coming off a 4-2 loss against the Buffalo Sabres. They didn’t look ready to play hockey on Monday afternoon and the results showed. The Sabres jumped out early and didn’t look back. Vegas are stuck on the road until next week when they’ll play the Sabres at T-Mobile Arena. After Washington, they head to Pittsburgh tomorrow night for a quick turnaround. It doesn’t make for the easiest schedule for them on the road.
The Knights have won one of three games this season, with an overtime win against the Wild on Friday. The offence were putting pucks on net against the Sabres, they just couldn’t convert. They hit the net 37 times but came 2 goals short of Buffalo. The Capitals have had a long layoff, so expect a fresh team tonight. Their last game was on October 4th against the Penguins, a 7-6 loss in OT. It was a crazy game that went back and forward all the way into overtime. Through their first couple of games, the Capitals have scored 13 goals. If they beat the Pens in overtime, it would have made for 7 goals in back-to-back efforts.
There’s no denying that the Capitals’ offense is going to be stacked again this season and pose a problem for Fleury on Wednesday night. Fleury doesn’t have fond memories of the Capitals this past spring. They scored 10 goals on him between Game 4 and 5. For a team who averaged 3.12 goals per game last season, expect them to rank near the top in 2018-19. They’ve scored at least 3 goals against the Golden Knights in their previous six meetings. Note that the Knights have allowed 3.33 goals per game this season, while the Caps have given up 6.5 in two games. There have been a lot of goals thus far this season, and this one in Washington shouldn’t be any exception between the Knights and Caps in a rematch showdown.