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Hurricanes-Capitals Game 7 Betting Odds, Preview: Is the Market Flattering the Caps?


James Guillory, USA Today Sports. Pictured: Alex Ovechkin

  • The Washington Capitals are -155 favorites over the Carolina Hurricanes in Game 7 on Wednesday night.
  • Will the Capitals take care of business at home or are the Hurricanes a good value play?

Carolina Hurricanes at Washington Capitals

  • Hurricanes odds: +140
  • Capitals odds: -155
  • Over/Under: 5.5
  • Time: 7:30 p.m. ET

The first round of the NHL Playoffs will come to a conclusion on Wednesday night and let’s just say the Hurricanes and Capitals have a lot to live up to after the absolutely stunning Game 7 between the Golden Knights and Sharks on Tuesday night/Wednesday morning.

Here’s to more of the same on Wednesday night.

Metrics Breakdown

We knew going into this series that the Hurricanes were a great 5-on-5 team. Carolina finished the season with the best expected goals percentage (55.5%) at 5-on-5 and ranked second in shot share (55.2%) and third in high-danger scoring chance rate (54.7%).

The Capitals are not a great play-driving team, but instead rely on individual skill and special teams to make up for their shortcomings at even strength.

This series has largely played out according to that script.

  • Shot Share: Carolina 60.3%
  • Expected Goals Share: Carolina 60.8%
  • High-Danger Scoring Chance Share: Carolina 57.9%

Washington has had success limiting Carolina’s speed and skill through physical play. The Caps threw the body effectively in Game 5, forcing Carolina’s defense into a couple of mistakes that the Capitals turned into goals.

Getting on top of Carolina’s defense and relying on a physical forecheck is likely Washington’s best path to success again in Game 7. Turning this game into a war will lead to more penalties being called and that favors the Capitals.

Washington’s power play has been dynamite in this series and it’s hard to imagine the Hurricanes winning a game if they end up in the box throughout the night.

Conversely, if the Hurricanes are able to move the puck through all three zones and play at a high tempo, the Capitals will be chasing the game and that will tilt the ice in Carolina’s favor.

Odds History

Game 1: Carolina +135 at Washington -150
Game 2: Carolina +140 at Washington -155
Game 3: Washington +120 at Carolina -130
Game 4: Washington +108 at Carolina -118
Game 5: Carolina +126 at Washington -136
Game 6: Washington +110 at Carolina -120
Game 7: Carolina +140 at Washington -155

After pinging around in the -150/-155 range for their first two home games of this series, the Capitals dipped to -136 for Game 5. That dip in price came after the Hurricanes won Games 3 and 4 in Raleigh and the Caps lost T.J. Oshie to injury late in Game 4.

Hurricanes at Capitals Betting Analysis

At the current odds, the market is suggesting the Capitals have a 59.3% chance of winning Game 7 and I’m not sold on that being the case nor am I sure why Washington’s price has adjusted so much from Game 5 (the last game played in D.C.) to tonight’s contest.

Casual bettors are backing the Caps because they are the defending champions and have home-ice advantage, but I think it’s pretty clear that these two teams are a lot closer than these odds suggest. Media-driven narratives and personal biases can often create betting value, and that seems to be the case tonight.

Carolina is clearly the better team at 5-on-5 and if the Hurricanes can avoid taking penalties, this game is pretty close to a coin flip. With that being the case, you’re getting great value on the Hurricanes at +140 and I’d be comfortable betting them at any number above +125.

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