NHL Betting Odds and Picks (Saturday, March 7): Capitals vs. Penguins, Sabres vs. Flyers and More
Kyle Ross/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Flyers mascot Gritty.
- The Capitals and Penguins will meet for a matinee matchup and the Pens are favored on their home ice (-130).
- Michael Leboff previews Saturday's matchup as well as the rest of the NHL slate, assessing where to find the best betting value.
- Find his analysis and picks below.
A few weeks ago, I was feeling really good about my Pittsburgh Penguins +2500 Stanley Cup future. The Pens were playing lights out hockey, especially on defense, and they were missing several key players — including Sidney Crosby. They were surging and it looked like they had only one way to go.
Then the wheels fell off.
Pittsburgh closed out February by losing six straight games in regulation, including losses against doormats like Buffalo, San Jose, Los Angeles and Anaheim. What was more alarming was that Pittsburgh, a team that had sparkling 5-on-5 metrics for a long time, was getting caved in at even strength. Somehow the Penguins posted the second-worst expected goals rate (44.1%) in the NHL during the month of February.
It made very little sense.
At the beginning of February it looked like the Penguins would run away with the Metropolitan Division. Now, they will need to catch both Washington and Philadelphia if they want to grab the top seed in the Metro.
The Penguins, who have won two in a row over Ottawa and Buffalo since their six-game skid, host the Capitals in a matinee on Saturday.
Washington Capitals at Pittsburgh Penguins
Capitals odds: +110
Penguins odds: -130
Time: 1 p.m. ET
TV: NHL Network
February didn’t treat the Washington Capitals all that well, either.