Must Win for Panthers
The Florida Panthers entered the playoffs as the top team in the Eastern Conference, but they completely flopped in Game 1 of their first-round series. Now they’re up against it to bounce back at home in Game 2.
Washington is again a solid underdog in Florida, but the Capitals are now playing with house money. With all of the pressure on Florida, can the Capitals pull another upset?
Capitals Broke Notable Streak
Washington just accomplished something that hasn’t been done in a long time against the Panthers. The Capitals were able to win a game when trailing Florida after 40 minutes.
Opposing teams were a combined 0-39-1 overall against Florida when trailing after two periods, including 0-22-0 on the road. The eighth-seeded Capitals came into this matchup with a ton of aggression and it paid off big time in the end.
T.J. Oshie, Tom Wilson, Lars Eller and Evgeny Kuznetsov all scored goals in an all-around excellent performance by the underdogs in Game 1.
Panthers Fell Asleep
This is the postseason now. Teams won’t just back away when trailing down the stretch as much as they might in the regular season.
Florida got complacent and it really hurt the team in Game 1. “We let one slip away,” Panthers defenseman Aaron Ekblad said.
Still, Florida is the top seed in the conference for a reason. This one loss won’t spiral the Panthers out of control. Game 2 should see them coming out a lot more aggressively and battling all the way until the final horn.
Don’t expect to see this team choke away a late game lead again in this series.
Capitals vs Panthers Head-to-Head
The Panthers won the regular-season series against Washington 2-1.
Capitals vs Panthers Game Information
- Game: Capitals (44-26-12) vs Panthers (58-18-6)
- Location: FLA Live Arena, Sunrise, FL
- Day/Time: Thursday, May 5. 7:30 p.m. ET
- Capitals vs. Panthers Live stream: NHL.TV
Capitals vs Panthers Betting Lines
Capitals vs Panthers Prediction
The Panthers are once again favorites in Game 2 in the sportsbook and it should be like that. It’s hard to imagine the top seed dropping not one, but two games at home to start this playoff series. Also, you can check player props for the NHL game between the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Colorado Avalanche.
Given how they should be more motivated than ever to bounce back and avoid falling behind, Florida should be dominant here. However, the Capitals proved that they can never be counted out despite the odds set before them.
Ultimately, the Panthers feel like the better straight-up pick to bet on in this game. Though it is incredibly close to call, lay the juice with your NHL picks.