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Florida Panthers vs. Washington Capitals Pick-Odds-Prediction - 2/27/14

Washington Capitals (27-23-9) at Florida Panthers (22-29-7)

NHL Hockey: Thursday, February 27, 2014 at 7:30 pm (BB&T Center)

The Line: Florida Panthers / Washington Capitals --- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds

TV: CSN-DC, FS-Florida

The Washington Capitals visit sunny Florida to take the ice with the Panthers at the BB&T Center.

Washington and Florida have split their prior two games with both decided in the shootout and while the Olympic break has been bad for some, it has been good for others. The Capitals fall under the latter category with injured Mikhail Grabvoski and Mike Green probable for Thursday's contest in Florida. That's good news for the Caps who could use all the help they can get as they are currently 11th in the Eastern Conference despite winning three of four heading in to the Sochi break.

Florida Panthers vs. Washington Capitals Pick-Odds-Prediction - 2/27/14

Robert Mayer-USA TODAY Sports

The Caps are thre points out of the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference and have reached the postseason seven straight times so they are experienced in getting there but the team has five players returning from Sochi who didn't have any rest which is a concern. Alex Ovechkin is playing with the burden of his father going through open heart surgery on top of everything. Throw in the fact that Washington faces 21 games against teams in the postseason picture or just a few pointsout and their work is cut out for them.

The Olympic break was not very kind to the Panthers with right winger Tomas Kopecky receiving a concussion while playing for Slovakia while Aleksander Barkov the second overall pick in the 2013 hurt his knee playing for Finland. A team's worse nightmare times two plus the fact the team isn't playing well and it has been an all around poor season. The numbers tell the story with the Panthers having dropped six of eight to fall 13 points out of the final postseason berth with just 26 games remaining. In fact, the biggest news coming out of Florida is just who will still be with the team after the March 5th trade deadline, not that this team could miss the playoffs for the 12th time in 13 years.

The home team is 11-3 in the last 14 meetings and Washington is 19-7 in the past 26 head to heads. No line but at first glance I favor the Caps so please check back later...

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Washington -110

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