Florida Panthers left wing Jonathan Huberdeau skating up the ice with the puck

May 3, 2022; Sunrise, Florida, USA; Florida Panthers left wing Jonathan Huberdeau (11) moves the puck during the second period against the Washington Capitals in game one of the first round of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs at FLA Live Arena. Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

  • The Panthers vs Capitals odds favor Florida as -195 moneyline favorites in Game 3 on Saturday (1:00 pm ET)
  • Washington came back to Earth in Game 2 losing 5-1 as Florida bounced back as expected.
  • Read below for the Game 3 Panthers vs Capitals odds, analysis and betting prediction

All is right with the world as the Florida Panthers evened their series on Thursday. The Panthers settled in and then came the goals as Washington could not find the answers to slow the Panthers down.

With the 5-1 win over Washington on Thursday night, Florida still does not hold home-ice advantage but Washington has its own issues at home.

Panthers vs Capitals Odds

Team Puck Line Total Moneyline
Florida Panthers -1.5 (+123) O 6.5 (-134) -195
Washington Capitals +1.5 (-148) U 6.5 (+106) +163

Odds as of May 6th at Barstool Sportsbook.

The Panthers opened up as road -195 moneyline favorites, in a contest that features a total of 6.5 goals again. Puck drop is scheduled for 1:00 pm ET at the Capital One Arena in Washington, DC with ESPN providing broadcast coverage.

Florida was almost a favorite, okay second shortest in the Stanley Cup Playoffs odds, and are now just -335 favorites to advance to the Second Round thanks to a resounding Game 2 triumph.

Panthers vs Capitals Betting Analysis

It was a bit strange watching Florida get outshot and badly through 35 minutes during Game 2 on Thursday. Ultimately, they closed and surpassed Washington by nine shots. This was after taking 26 of the last 31 shots on goal.

The Capitals brought themselves to within a goal and then Florida responded just 27 seconds later restoring a two-goal lead. Once Mason Marchment scored, the Florida bench exhaled. There was a feeling this game might be over.

Later in the second period, Anton Lundell added a goal followed by Carter Verhaeghe a little over two minutes later. That provided the winning margin of 5-1 as neither team scored in the third period despite 17 Florida shots.

Jonathan Huberdeau, should be a finalist in the Hart Trophy odds, and Aleksander Barkov, combined for a goal and two assists. Barkov scored the eventual game-winning goal late in the first period. They also racked up seven shots and 11 scoring chances together.

The good news for Florida backers however, is that they beat the puckline and moneyline in Game 2. Can they do it again on the road in Game 3 versus an opponent who struggled to stay above .500 at home (Washington was 19-16-6). Florida, by contrast, cruised to a 24-11-6 record away from South Florida.

Florida vs Washington Injury News

Will Tom Wilson play in Game 3? That is a big question heading into Saturday afternoon’s game. He makes a difference as Florida was able to dictate pace eventually. By the end of Game 2, the Florida Panthers looked like they could attack at will and do whatever they wanted versus Washington.

Wilson’s physical presence will again be greatly missed if he cannot give it a go for Washington in Game 3. His play creates space for him and others to generate more chances. That disrupted Florida’s dominating ways in Game 1. In Game 2, that made Sergei Bobrovsky’s life in net easier.

Alex Ovechkin meanwhile, looked even worse in Game 2 while battling a shoulder injury. He played 15:43 which was almost five minutes below his season average of 20:34.

Panthers vs Capitals Game 3 Pick

So, Washington and Florida resembled a one-side fireworks display during the second half of Game 2. This was another game where the under managed to hit, albeit barely. This was because the Capitals forgot how to score goals (one on just 27 shots). Also, there may be some questions whether Vitek Vanecek even starts Game 3. Consider that Ilya Samsonov stopped 17 straight shots at the end of Game 2.

Samsonov endured a goals-against average of 3.06 at home while posting a save percentage of only .883. The problem is Vanecek was closer to NHL average with a 2.69 goals-against average and a ,906 save percentage. That will make Peter Laviolette’s decision on who to start Game 3 that much more difficult.

Florida’s offense still can easily average more than three goals a game at home. Washington, without Tom Wilson potentially, and a less than 100% Alex Ovechkin spells huge trouble. Is the puckline a bit much of a gamble? Maybe. On the other hand, the 60-minute pick comes in closer to even.

Pick: Florida in regulation (-114)

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