It has been a long time coming for Alex Ovechkin and the Washington Capitals. When Ovechkin arrived as a rookie for the 2005-06 season he joined a team playing in a half empty building that was totally demoralized. The NHL was coming off a lockout season. Both the Caps and the league had reached rock bottom. But in short order “The Great Eight” led a resurgence that filled the building with all of the fans “rocking the red.” Yet through many highly successful regular seasons the playoffs were always a disaster. The Caps would always fall short. And Ovechkin bore the brunt of the blame. But no more. The Caps are in the Stanley Cup Final to face a remarkable first year expansion team. The Vegas Golden Knights are quite a story in their own right!
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Washington Capitals vs. Vegas Golden Knights Stanley Cup Final
Date and Time: Series runs May 28 through June 13, 2018
Location: T-Mobile Arena, Las Vegas, Nevada and Capital One Center, Washington, DC
NHL Odds at Betcris: Golden Knights -140, Capitals +120
Capitals vs. Golden Knights TV Coverage: Check Listings
The 2018 Stanley Cup Final is a best four out of seven series. The first two games will be in Las Vegas on Monday, May 28 and Wednesday, May 30 with starting times of 8 p.m. ET. NBC will televise game one with NBCSN covering game two. Games three and four will be in Washington on Saturday, June 2 and Monday, June 4. Starting times are 8 p.m. ET with coverage on NBCSN for game three and NBC for game four. If necessary game five will be in Las Vegas on Thursday, June 7 with a staring time of 8 p.m. ET and coverage on NBC. Game six would be at Washington on Sunday, June 10 at 8 p.m. ET and coverage on NBC. A seventh game would return to Vegas for Wednesday, June 13 with an 8 p.m. ET starting time and coverage on NBC.
Washington’s Road to the Final
The Caps were looking as good as dead when they lost the first two games at home in their opening round series against the Columbus Blue Jackets. But goaltender Braden Holtby was called off the bench to save the season which he did. The Caps won the next four against Columbus to clinch the series. That was followed by a six game series win over the defending Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh Penguins. Pittsburgh had beaten the Caps eight consecutive playoff series prior to that. It was a landmark win. Washington then faced Tampa Bay in the Eastern Conference final and started in impressive fashion with road wins in the first two games. But the Caps then lost the next three games to face elimination. However, Holtby posted shutouts in the final two games to clinch the series. Washington is in the Stanley Cup Final for the first time since 1998.
Vegas’ Road to the Final
Vegas opened the season as a 500/1 shot to win the Stanley Cup. The home town team may end up costing its local sportsbooks quite a bit of money. Vegas swept the Los Angeles Kings in the opening round and then eliminated the San Jose Sharks in six games in the second round. In the Western Conference Final, they swept four games against the Winnipeg Jets after losing game one. It was a stunning and dominant performance.
Capitals vs. Golden Knights Free Picks
Both teams have had landmark seasons for sure. The Capitals run has been inspiring. But Vegas has superior scoring and defensive depth. And goaltender Marc Andre Fleury has been stellar. Look for the Golden Knights to cap off their dream season with a Stanley Cup Parade on the Strip!
Capitals vs. Golden Knights Pick: Bet the Vegas Golden Knights to win the Stanley Cup Final series
Capitals vs. Golden Knights Series Prediction: Golden Knights 4, Capitals 2
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