Capitals vs. Islanders: Free Picks, Odds & Predictions

Capitals vs Islanders NHL week 16
Washington vs. New York, Capital One Arena

Trying to predict the games this season between the New York Islanders and the Washington Capitals is seemingly a moot point. On one night, the teams go to a shootout tied 0-0 and two days later, they combine to score nine goals, but the good news for the Capitals is they won both games. Washington has a little bit of breathing room over the Islanders after those two wins, and the race for seeds in the East Division is heating up between the four contenders. Every little point matters and the Capitals and Islanders will certainly play like it on Tuesday.

Free Picks

Brock Nelson has scored just one goal in his last eight games and he’s had just one assist in that span as well, but he still leads the Islanders with 16 goals this season. Nelson did score twice against Washington earlier this month when the two teams met on Long Island, which is always a positive that he can find the gaps in the Washington defense. When the Islanders have an offensive explosion and score goals, Nelson tends to be involved, and I expect the Islanders to fully punish Washington’s porous defense on Tuesday. It’s fairly long odds of +210 from the NHL betting sites in New Jersey, but they’re worthwhile for New York’s leading goal-scorer.

BROCK NELSON SCORES GOAL

Thursday’s shutout was the outlier for the Capitals during this recent form in which Washington has allowed three goals in four of its last five games. The Islanders will likely come out with a sense of urgency Tuesday, and when that happens, they tend to score goals in bunches. The legal sports betting sites in New Jersey are offering favorable +205 odds on the Islanders’ offensive outburst because of New York’s poor track record for scoring goals. While it is true that the Islanders have scored four goals or more just once in their last 11 games, they did score eight goals on Washington earlier this month. That offensive potential is still there for New York and I expect it to come out in such a critical game for the Islanders.

NEW YORK ISLANDERS OVER 3.5 TOTAL GOALS

It hasn’t been the best two-week stretch for the Islanders, but losing three games in a row seems a bit hard to believe. New York lost five straight games earlier this season, but has avoided three consecutive defeats over the last 40 games. Washington’s defense and goaltending are still problematic, and I cannot imagine the Capitals being able to put up six goals for a second straight game against the Islanders. I expect the Islanders to put forth their best effort of the season and be able to add some more juice into the playoff race in the East Division. The hockey betting sites in New Jersey offering +160 odds on the Islanders to win in regulation on the road, so it’s nice value on the slightest of road underdogs.

NEW YORK ISLANDERS WIN IN REGULATION

Best Odds

Washington New York
888Sport
-117 -105
FanDuel
-118 +100
BetMGM
-120 +100

Statistics

Head to Head

This is the eighth and final matchup of the year between Washington and New York as the Islanders try to bounce back from consecutive losses to the Capitals last week on Long Island that gave Washington a 4-3 lead in the season series.

Stats

  • New York has not had 30 shots on net in any of its last six games, which might be why the Islanders have scored one or zero goals in four of those six contests. A major reason might be the lack of a power play as the Islanders have converted on just 12.9 percent of their 70 power-play chances since March 1.
  • The Capitals have the second-best power play in the NHL this season with a 26.7 percent success rate, but they have been even more dangerous in the month of April. Washington has scored multiple power play goals in five of 13 games this month and have converted on 32.6 percent of its chances on the man advantage.
  • Ilya Samsonov has a 6-2-0 record in his last eight starts despite having a 3.22 goals against average and .868 save percentage over that same stretch. Samsonov has won the game four of the six times during this stretch he’s had a save percentage below .900 in the game.
  • Semyon Varlamov has not allowed a goal in regulation or overtime to the Capitals in his last seven periods against his former team. He pitched a 1-0 shutout earlier this month and then took the loss in 1-0 shootout defeat on Thursday.

Our Prediction for Washington vs. New York

New York Islanders to win

This game comes down to picking whether to trust the New York Islanders offense or the Washington Capitals defense. The Islanders score goals in spurts, and they will need plenty of offense to counteract the Capitals’ high-scoring attack. Washington made a hot goalie in Ilya Sorokin look below average Saturday night, and New York simply couldn’t generate enough offense to respond. However, I’m betting on the Capitals’ goaltending woes to catch up to them as the Capitals continue to win despite having a team save percentage below .900 this month. That simply isn’t sustainable, so I’ll bet on the Islanders to get the job done.

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Josh Walfish is an award-winning journalist who has been covering college and professional sports in the United States. He holds a journalism degree from Northwestern University and his work has appeared in the Miami Herald, Chicago Sun-Times and Providence Journal. He most recently chronicled the UMass hockey teams rise to prominence over the last two years for the local newspaper

All Reviews by Josh Walfish

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