Ice Hockey

Betting tips: Washington Capitals vs. Edmonton Oilers 11/24

Caps may be on a winning streak, but that doesn’t stop us from finding value in the visitors.

Caps winning despite poor power play

The Capitals are one of the hottest teams in the NHL right now. The capital’s pride and joy has won five in a row and eight of its previous ten games. Weird as it may sound, their power play has had almost no effect on this streak whatsoever. Instead of seeing Alex Ovechkin score at will with his lethal one-timer, we have witnessed a lost PP unit with a 6.7 percent efficiency. Yes, that is the worst in the league.  

At the same time, the Caps aren’t dominating the 5v5 game either. Rather, they are a bottom eight team with a 46.54% expected goal share 5v5. This team seems to be getting all the goals they need at just the right times. Rising to fill the void in the center position, Dylan Strome has been a big part of that. Strome has eight goals, three more than Ovechkin does.

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Washington will continue to need Strome’s strong performances, as the Capitals are weaker down the middle year after year. Nicklas Backstrom’s NHL career may be wrapped up, and Evgeny Kuznetsov has declined in recent years. Kuznetsov, who has suffered from illness, is likely to be fit to play. Instead, defenseman Martin Fehervary is sidelined, which means Alexander Alexeyev will suit up despite being an inferior option from a puck-moving perspective.

Oilers still a mystery

The coaching change hasn’t given Oilers a boost they very much desire. After Jay Woodcroft was fired, Edmonton has picked up two wins and three losses. During the same period, opponents have scored on the Oilers a total of 21 times. As a result, GM Ken Holland is likely to be exploring different options in the goaltending market all the time.

The Oilers’ start to the season is statistically peculiar. In terms of expected goals, the team is in the top four both 5v5 and in all game situations. A statistic that falls between 54% and 56% typically turns into wins even with a small sample. However, since the start of the season, the Oilers have both wasted scoring chances and suffered from sub-par goaltending. I’m willing to give a very high probability that this trend will turn around at some point. Having said that, the first quarter of the regular season is almost over. Time is running out.

There’s slight value in Edmonton

The Oilers have been somewhere between good and excellent when we look at more than just the results. On the other hand, the Capitals have definitely enjoyed more than their fair share of positive variance. Therefore, we should not stare too much at the standings when contemplating the odds in this game.

Many people refuse to play against streaks, but it’s just a matter of probability calculations based on assumed power rankings and lineups. So, let’s forget about the Caps’ winning streak for a while and focus on the big picture. I draw the line on -140 for the away moneyline. Unibet offers -132 which is good enough for a small wager.

Tip: Edmonton Oilers Moneyline @ -132
Units: 3/10

The match will start on 11/24/2023 at 3:00 PM EST.
The odds are from the time of publication of the article and are subject to change.

Esa Kostet
X: @konekostet

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