It's not the busiest midweek slate in the NHL, but two big games are on the schedule for this week’s edition of Wednesday Night Hockey.
First, the Devils are in D.C. to take on the Capitals. A little later in the evening, it's the Anaheim Ducks hosting the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Jump ahead here:
Let's look at each game and make some picks!
|Capital One Arena, Washington, DC
|7:30 PM ET, Wednesday, January 3
|How to watch
Yes, it's only January, but this is a huge game for both the Devils and Capitals. Washington is currently two points ahead of the Devils in the Metropolitan Division standings.
New Jersey is on the outside of the playoff picture. That's not a place where we thought they would be at this point of the season. They're 5-4-1 in their last ten games. They've won three of their last four.
The Devils haven't had a ton of success against the Capitals in their head-to-head matchups. Washington is 6-1-3 in their last ten games against the Devils.
Jesper Bratt and Jack Hughes are leading the charge offensively for the Devils with 18 and 15 points, respectively, in their last 14 games. But the depth scoring isn't there for the Devils. Timo Meier has been a mess. He only has four points in his last 14 games. Tyler Toffoli has 6 points his last 14. It's just not good enough for a Devils team with Stanley Cup aspirations.
Washington has been mediocre in their last ten games with a 4-3-3 record. They are being carried by their goaltender Charlie Lindgren. He has been a revelation for the Capitals. In 15 games this season, Lindgren has a .928 save percentage, 2.27 goals against average, and two shutouts. He has been a major reason as to why Washington is in the playoff conversation in the eastern conference.
This is a tough game to predict. Both teams are playing similar hockey right now. I'll take the team with the hot goalie and better head-to-head record against the Devils.
Money Line: WAS Capitals +145
Total Goals: Under 6.5
|TOR Maple Leafs
|Honda Center, Anaheim, CA
|9:00 PM ET, Wednesday, January 3
|How to watch
The Toronto Maple Leafs are playing the second game of their California road trip. They're taking on a young, inexperienced Anaheim team.
I wrote about how the Leafs are not as good as their record indicates last week in my Wednesday Night Hockey preview. and that is still the case today. The Leafs are winning a lot of games via comebacks and in shootouts. It's an unsustainable way to win hockey games in the long run.
The Leafs played last night in LA and won 3-0 over an incredible Kings team. This game in Anaheim could be a let-down for a tired Leafs squad.
The Ducks are 3-7-0 in their last ten games. They're still in their rebuilding phase and it shows. They're not getting much scoring from their top players. The goaltending is mediocre.
This feels like a game where the Ducks could take advantage of a tired Leafs team who played in a competitive game last night in LA.
Money Line: ANA Ducks +160
Anytime Goalscorer: Trevor Zegras +240
Odds displayed within this article were correct at the time of writing and are subject to change.