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NHL picks: Capitals vs. Flyers, Panthers vs. Blue Jackets

Profile Picture: Robert Criscola

March 11th, 2021

NHL fans and bettors have plenty of games to choose from this Thursday night, but we crunched the numbers and came up with two solid wagers for this evening.

First, we’ll dive into an East Division battle between the Washington Capitals and the Philadelphia Flyers. Then we’ll preview a Central Division showdown between the Florida Panthers and the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Washington Capitals (15-6-4) at Philadelphia Flyers (13-7-3), 7:00 p.m. ET

Fri, March 12 2021, 12:00 AM

PHI Flyers

Moneyline

-114

Spread

-1.5

Total

O 6.5

WSH Capitals

Moneyline

-107

Spread

+1.5

Total

U 6.5

Bettors should not expect the Flyers to cool off the scorching Capitals when they visit the Wells Fargo Center on Thursday night.

Washington has won six of their last seven overall, including a 3-1 victory over Philadelphia on Sunday afternoon. Their defense has shown remarkable improvement in this stretch, surrendering two or fewer goals on five occasions.

The Capitals have also gotten remarkable production from left winger Jakub Vrana of late, as he’s tallied five goals over a six-game span.

Meanwhile, the Flyers have failed to impress since starting the season 7-2-1, going 6-5-2 since. Three of those victories were over the bottom-feeding Buffalo Sabres. Philly has dropped four of their last five games against teams with winning records.

NHL Free Pick: Capitals -107


Florida Panthers (16-5-4) at Columbus Blue Jackets (10-12-5), 7:00 p.m. ET

Fri, March 12 2021, 12:00 AM

CBJ Blue Jackets

Moneyline

+114

Spread

+1.5

Total

O 5.5

FLA Panthers

Moneyline

-139

Spread

-1.5

Total

U 5.5

Two teams trending in opposite directions will meet at Nationwide Arena on Thursday night as the Panthers – winners of six of their last seven on the road as favorites – visit the Blue Jackets, who have dropped six of their last seven as underdogs and nine of their last 12 overall.

Florida has won three of its last four contests, including a victory over Columbus in this building on Tuesday night. Left wing Jonathan Huberdeau has led the way on offense in this span, notching two goals and four assists.

Panthers goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky grabbed the win over his former team on Tuesday night, and was tabbed as the starting netminder once more. The numbers are solid if not spectacular for Bobrovsky this season – he’s 9-2-2 with a .905 save % and a 2.94 GAA.

There are plenty of reasons why the Blue Jackets – 24th in goals per game (2.59) and 25th in goals allowed per game (3.22) – are losing this year and the buzzards are circling over head coach John Tortorella. The surprising lack of production from trade acquisition Patrik Laine is just one of those reasons.

He’s failed to tally a single point in seven straight tilts, registering a minus-4 in over two total hours of ice time. Unless Laine snaps out of this skid, it will be hard to back the Blue Jackets with confidence.

NHL Free Pick: Panthers -139

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