The Carolina Hurricanes responded in front of their fans with a 5-0 win over the Washington Capitals in Game 3. However, if they are going to even their series at 2-2 it will have to be without one of their best players. Carolina will not have rookie Andrei Svechnikov in the lineup when they take to the ice for Game 4 on Thursday night after he was injured in a fight with Alex Ovechkin. The Hurricanes will be in tough to replace Svechnikov’s scoring touch after he recorded three points in the first three games of the series.
Capitals vs. Hurricanes Stanley Cup Playoffs Betting Analysis
Washington produced an impressive 24-15-2 record on the road in the regular season, including 22-17 when on the road with a total of six or higher. Ovechkin and company are also 11-3 in their last 14 playoff games in which they have been listed as the underdog. They’ve been a decent bounce back team as they are 17-11 after giving up four goals or more and 13-8 after a loss by two or more.
The Hurricanes did perform at a high level on home ice all season with a 24-13-2 record at the PNC Arena. Carolina is 4-1 in its last five home games as the favorite. The Hurricanes are also 21-7 in their last 28 games as a favorite overall. The Canes are also 20-11 after a win by two or more.
The Capitals offence was shut out in Game 3, but that likely won’t be the case in Game 4. The Hurricanes are 3-8 in their last 11 after shutting out their opponent. The big question is whether or not goaltender Braden Holtby can hold his own and perform at a high enough level to help Washington go up 3-1 in the series with a victory. As we outlined in our Game 3 preview, Holtby plays better at home than on the road, and it showed.
One big concern here is that the Caps are not getting many shots on net. They had just 18 in Game 3 and that comes on the heels of having 33 in Game 2 and 20 in Game 1. They need to throw more pucks at Petr Mrazek to win.
The Hurricanes could be without both Svechnikov and Michael Ferland after both players left Game 3 with injuries. If that is the case, it will put even more pressure on the players lining up in their top-six to deliver. Warren Foegele helped set the pace for Carolina with two goals and an assist in Game 3. Jordan Staal had two assists while Brock McGinn had a goal and an assist. The Hurricanes desperately need more from Sebastian Aho and Teuvo Teravainen in this series as both were held to a single assist in Monday’s 5-0 win.
Carolina will hope for a similar goaltending effort from Petr Mrazek, who stopped all 18 shots he faced in Game 3, but he should expect a higher workload.
The Ovechkin-Svechnikov fight has lit a fire under the Hurricanes, so it wouldn’t be surprising to see them even this series up. They’ve played well ever since their young star was knocked out.