New York Rangers vs. Washington Capitals Prediction, NHL Odds

Daniel Coyle | Updated Oct 13, 2021

NHL: Washington Capitals at New York Rangers

There's no love lost between the Rangers and Capitals. Will there be fireworks when the two clubs hit the ice tonight?

NY Rangers
17-5-3
AT
October 13, 2021, 7:30 PM ET
Capital One Arena
Washington
16-4-5-1
Puckline +1.5 -239
Moneyline -115
Over / Under o +6

59%

Betting Action

41%

Puckline -1.5 +199
Moneyline -105
Over / Under u +6

59%

Betting Action

41%

The New York Rangers open the new NHL season amid high expectations and a stiff season-opening matchup with the divisional rival Washington Capitals. The Rangers are expecting their recent rebuild to bear fruit this season after finishing outside the playoff picture during the abbreviated 2021 NHL campaign. The Capitals are coming off a dismal playoff performance, but aim to build on a stellar regular season that earned them a share of top spot in the East Division standings.

Washington is set to hit the ice for Wednesday night’s season opener at Capital One Arena as a slim -115 home favourite, with the total favoured to go OVER 6.0.

Rangers vs. Capitals NHL Odds

With injuries emerging as a concern in Washington, the betting line has steadily tilted in favour of the Rangers. New York opened as a +105 underdog, but has since gained momentum on the NHL odds, improving to their current position at -105. The Rangers have gained momentum despite struggling in recent dates with the Capitals. New York has dropped four of their past six meetings with Washington, including a pair of defeats at Capital One Arena.

There has been no shortage of scoring in recent clashes between these Metropolitan Division rivals, with the total reaching 6.0 or higher in four straight contests, ending a 4-0 run for the UNDER. The home team has held a slight edge in head-to-head matchups, posting wins in seven of 11 meetings since the start of the 2019-2020 NHL season, with just three of those clashes getting settled by just a single goal.

New York Rangers

Winners in each of their final three preseason contests, the Rangers are aiming to fuel their bid to return to playoff contention with a fast start.  The club should benefit from Artemi Panarin’s return to full health. The club’s leading scorer was sorely missed while taking a personal leave of absence last season and was subsequently sidelined by injury down the stretch. However, the talented Russian has consistently performed against Washington, racking up 17 points in his past 10 appearances vs the Capitals. The question lingers as to whether Panarin’s return will help turn around the Rangers’ late-season road struggles after the club closed out their schedule with just one win over their final four away dates, while scoring just six total goals.

You may remember Panarin missed the last few games of the season after Tom Wilson bounced his head off the ice in a scrum. The Rangers certainly haven’t forgotten. They beefed up in the off-season and Ryan Reaves is expected to be in the lineup for his first game with the Blueshirts. Note to Tom Wilson: keep your head up.

Washington Capitals

The veteran Capitals proved they could compete with the top teams in the NHL last season while marching to an impressive 36-15-5 record. However, this club returns to action with lots to prove after meekly bowing out in the first round of the playoffs with a first-round series loss to Boston in five games. The Capitals have traditionally opened their schedule on a winning note, claiming victory in each of their past four season openers. However, they will be forced to kick off the 2021-2022 campaign shorthanded after seeing veteran centre Nicklas Backstrom go on the long-term injury reserve with a hip injury. Backstrom has been a consistent offensive performer when facing the Rangers, averaging a point per game over his past 18 appearances. Further complicating matters in the uncertain status of Alex Ovechkin, who remains a game-time decision after suffering a lower-body injury in preseason action.

NHL Prediction: Who Will Win Rangers vs. Capitals?

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