Washington Capitals (27-6-2) at Carolina Hurricanes (15-17-5)
|Date & Time||Thursday December 31, 2015, 6:00 PM (EST)|
The Line: Carolina Hurricanes / Washington Capitals --- Over/Under:
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The Capitals look to extend their winning ways against he Canes on Thursday and reach double digits after claiming their ninth in a row at home last night against the Sabres.
The Washington Capitals continue to win hockey games and defy logic as they are on an absolute tear right now atop the NHL standings and they can push their mark to 29-6-2 with a win against the lowly Canes on Thursday night. The Caps are a very impressive 13-3-1 on the road this season and look like the team to beat in the Eastern Conference as they have a very deep lineup, a goaltender playing up to Vezina standards, and a mentality about them this year that is different from years past. They may turn to Phillip Grubauer in this one and give Braden Holtby the night off as Cam Ward will likely counter for the Canes.
Carolina meanwhile sits in seventh place in the Metro division and are a full 23 points back of the Caps which is a crazy big number considering the teams have only played 37 games and while the division is certainly out of reach for Carolina they are only 10 back of the Isles for third. The Canes though are in a different stage of their development as they are a team in transition and that could continue as the trade deadline approaches as some franchise pieces could shift around and that includes Cam Ward and Eric Staal. As for tonight though, I think the total is the better play and regardless of who starts for the Caps they have the defensive system in place to keep this one under and that is where we will go.