Lightning vs Capitals Prediction - NHL Picks 12/23/23

Washington Capitals (17-9-4) vs Tampa Bay Lightning (16-13-5)

Game Info: Saturday, December 23, 2023 at 7:00 pm (Capital One Arena)

Betting Odds: Washington Capitals +114 / Tampa Bay Lightning -137 --- Over/Under: 6.5 Click Here for the Latest Odds

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The Tampa Bay Lightning will play the Washington Capitals on Saturday night at Capital One Arena in Washington, DC. Tampa Bay has won three of their last four games, while Washington is on a three game winning streak. Let’s take a look at the betting matchup and the Lightning vs Capitals prediction.

Lightning Preview

The Tampa Bay Lightning are 16-13-5 this season after they defeated Vegas by a score of 5-4 in their last game. Tampa Bay trailed 2-0 after the first period, but scored four goals in a row in the second to take the lead. Vegas tied the game in the third, but the Lightning scored with about 70 seconds left for the win. The Lightning out shot Vegas by a total of 36-34 and went 2-4 on the power play in the game. Tampa Bay defeated St. Louis by a score of 6-1 in the game prior to Vegas, but lost to Calgary in the game before that. The Lightning are scoring 3.41 goals per game and they are allowing 3.50 goals against per game, while going 30.9% on the power play and 79.4% on the penalty kill. Nikita Kucherov has led Tampa Bay with 23 goals, 34 assists, and 154 shots on goal. The projected starting goalie for Tampa Bay is Andrei Vasilevskiy, who is 7-5-0 this year with a 2.93 goals against average and a .901 save percentage. 

Capitals Preview

The Washington Capitals are 17-9-4 this year after they defeated Columbus in overtime by a score of 3-2 in their last game. Washington led 2-1 in the third period, but blew the lead late, before winning in overtime. The Capitals were out shot by a total of 36-32 and went 2-3 on the power play in the game. Washington has also defeated the Islanders and Hurricanes during this winning streak. The Capitals are scoring 2.43 goals per game and they are allowing 2.73 goals against per game, while going 12.5% on the power play and 82.3% on the penalty kill. Alex Ovechkin has led Washington with six goals, 14 assists, and 116 shots on goal. The projected starting goalie for Washington is Darcy Kuemper, who is 8-6-2 this year with a 2.90 goals against average and a .900 save percentage. 

Washington Capitals Team Facts

  • The Capitals have lost each of their last eight games as underdogs against Atlantic Division opponents.
  • The Capitals have failed to cover the puck line in 12 of their last 13 games against Atlantic Division opponents.
  • The Capitals have lost the first period in seven of their last eight home games against Atlantic Division opponents.
  • The 'Over 1.5 Goals Period 2' market has hit in each of the Capitals' last eight games against Eastern Conference opponents.

Tampa Bay Lightning Team Facts

  • The Lightning have lost five of their last six games at Capital One Arena following a home win.
  • The Lightning have failed to cover the puck line in each of their last six night games at Capital One Arena following a home win.
  • The 'Over 1.5 Goals Period 2' market has hit in each of the Lightning's last eight games.
  • The home team has won the second period in nine of the Lightning's last 10 games.

Washington Capitals Player Prop Facts

  • Evgeny Kuznetsov has recorded at least one point in 14 of the Capitals' last 15 games as underdogs against the Lightning.
  • Max Pacioretty has scored at least one goal in three of his last four appearances with his team as a home underdog.
  • Evgeny Kuznetsov has recorded at least one assist in each of the Capitals' last five games as underdogs against the Lightning.
  • John Carlson ranks 1st in the Metropolitan Division for average time on ice (25:45) this season.

Tampa Bay Lightning Player Prop Facts

  • Steven Stamkos has scored a goal in four of the Lightning's last five games as favorites against Metropolitan Division opponents.
  • Nikita Kucherov has recorded two or more points in each of the Lightning's last six games as favorites.
  • Nikita Kucherov has recorded at least one assist in nine of his last 10 appearances against Eastern Conference opponents.
  • Nikita Kucherov ranks T1st in the league for multi-point games (17) this season.

Matchup/League Facts

  • The Washington Capitals rank 8th in the league for goals against per game this season (2.73).
  • The Washington Capitals rank 1st in the league for Period 3 goals allowed per game this season (0.70).
  • The Tampa Bay Lightning rank 1st in the league for power play goals this season (34).
  • The Tampa Bay Lightning rank T2nd in the league in penalty minutes this season (390).

Lightning vs Capitals Betting Prediction

Washington comes into this game on a three game winning streak, but all three wins have come in overtime or in a shootout. The Capitals are 9-4-2 at home, while Tampa Bay is only 6-10-2 on the road. The Lighting have won two games in a row, including a great win over Vegas last time out, but cannot put it all together on the road. Washington has struggled to score consistently this season, but they are one of the better defensive groups in the league. I am going to ride Washington’s hot streak and take the Capitals to get the win at home. 

David’s Pick Capitals ML

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The pick in this article is the opinion of the writer, not a PickDawgz site consensus.

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