Tampa Bay Lightning (17-10-2) at Washington Capitals (16-12-2)
|Date & Time||Tuesday December 10, 2013, 7:00 PM (EST)|
The Line: Washington Capitals -136 / Tampa Bay Lightning +124 --- Over/Under: 5.5
|TV Channel||Stream NHL games all season on ESPN+ for only $4.99 a month. Sign up now!|
On Sunday night the Washington Capitals took advantage of an opponent that didn't want to play at all. Despite an Alex Ovechkin no-show the Capitals got a solid team effort and great goaltending performance from youngster Philipp Grubauer to defeat the New York Rangers 4-1. After a scoreless first period the Capitals came out with two quick goals in the second period. Jason Chimera and Steve Oleksy scored 25 seconds apart to give Washington a 2-0 lead that they would never relinquish. Chimera's goal was a dirty, hard working goal that saw him go to the net and keep whacking away at the puck until it finally slipped behin Henrik Lundqvist. Mikhail Grabovski then put the game out of reach when he beat Lundqvist on a penalty shot for his ninth goal of the season. These are huge games in these divisional match ups and the Capitals know that the Rangers are going to be one of their biggest competitors for one of those playoff berths in the Metropolitan Division. Washington can only hope that Grubauer can turn in more starts like this one because the Capitals will need to spell Braden Holtby at times to keep him fresh. Holtby should be back in the net on Tuesday night against a Tampa Bay club that is struggling mightily to score goals in Steven Stamkos' absence. The Lightning have gone 1-3 in their last four gmaes and scored a total of just four goals. After a 3-1 win over the Ottawa Senators the other night the Lightning followed it up with another offensive no-show against the Winnipeg Jets. The Lightning were outshot 15-5 in the first period and Winnipeg jumped out to an early 1-0 lead. The Lightning would gain some traction in the second period and tied the game on Nate Thompson'ssecond of the season but that was all they'd get. The Jets would win it in overtime on a goal from Mark Scheifele. Anders Lindback dropped to 2-5-1 on the season as he made 34 saves in defeat. These are two hockey clubs in the Capitals and Lightning that no each other very well from all their time together in the former Southeast Division. Right now the Lightning just aren't playing very good hockey and the Capitals aren't costing us too much in this one.