Alex Ovechkin has had to wait his entire career for this moment. A shot at the Stanley Cup. In his career Ovechkin has led Washington to its greatest era of glory. In fact, he completely transformed the franchise itself. But perpetual playoff failures have been the cloud over the franchise. Those failures to close helped cost general manager George McPhee his job in 2014. Ironically enough McPhee eventually landed in Vegas as general manager of the Golden Knights. Ovechkin and the Capitals were outgunned in game one. They will now attempt to even the series before it heads back to Washington for games three and four.
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Washington Capitals vs. Vegas Golden Knights Game 2
Date and Time: Wednesday, May 30, 2018, 8 p.m. ET
Location: T-Mobile Arena, Las Vegas, Nevada
NHL Odds at Betcris: Golden Knights -1 ½ +175, Capitals +1 ½ -210, Over 5 ½ -125, Under 5 ½ +105, Golden Knights -155, Capitals +135
Capitals vs. Golden Knights TV Coverage: NBCSN
Vegas scored a thrilling 6-4 win in game one of the best of seven Stanley Cup Final on Monday night. The Golden Knights were led to victory by their fourth line. This was a revealing demonstration of the superior depth of the Vegas team. Tomas Nosek lit the lamp twice for Vegas. Colin Miller, Reilly Smith, William Karlsson and Ryan Reeves each added a Vegas goal. Deryk Engelland added two assists with a plus two. Reeves was also a plus two while Pierre Edouard Bellemare was a plus three. Marc Andre Fleury shook off a sluggish start to post 24 saves, many of which were clutch down the stretch. Washington’s Braden Holtby posted 28 saves on 33 shots in what was a rough night.
Vegas goaltender Marc Andre Fleury is the leading candidate to win the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff Most Valuable Player. Fleury has a record this post season of 13-3 with a .942 save percentage and four shutouts to go with a 1.81 goals against average. From the day he took center stage at the expansion draft at T-Mobile Arena Fleury has become the face of the franchise. He has led the Golden Knights with class and excellence both on and off the ice. There is no actual team captain listed by Vegas. Fleury is a major reason as to why. He is the team leader by reality.
Washington goaltender Braden Holtby has had a remarkable post season in his own right. Holtby began the playoffs on the bench but was called upon to bail the Capitals out of a 2-0 series deficit against the Columbus Blue Jackets. And that was also after both of those defeats were on home ice. But Holtby rose to the occasion and delivered clutch goaltending. He also shut out the powerful Tampa Bay Lightning in games six and seven to clinch the Eastern Conference championship. So far in the playoffs Holtby has posted a .919 save percentage with a 2.20 goals against average and two shutouts with a record of 12-7.
Players to Watch
If Washington is to take game two Alex Ovechkin will have to be a key figure in the effort. The Great Eight had just one assist in game one. Ovechkin has inspired even his most critical detractors with his grit and determination this spring. He has 12 goals, 11 assists and a plus five in the playoffs so far.
Vegas center Jonathan Marchessault has eight goals with 11 assists and a plus 10. Like his coach Gerard Gallant, he is a Florida Panthers castaway.
Capitals vs. Golden Knights Free Picks
Washington has been the most profitable road playoff team this spring with a record of 8-3 away from home. Look for the Caps to send this series back to Washington even.
Capitals vs. Golden Knights Pick: Bet the Washington Capitals money line
Capitals vs. Golden Knights Score Prediction: Capitals 4, Golden Knights 2
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