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NHL Predictions: This week's biggest NHL matches

NHL Predictions: This week's biggest NHL matches

Inform your NHL predictions ahead of this week's biggest matches with Pinnacle's weekly update, including analysis, team news, and the latest hockey odds.

The Washington Capitals and the Pittsburgh Penguins are two of the biggest rivals in the NHL, and this weekend's clash at the PPG Paints Arena will take on extra significance as both teams are battling to secure a Wild Card position in the Eastern Conference.

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Washington Capitals at Pittsburgh Penguins predictions

At the time of writing, Pittsburgh currently hold one of those Wild Card berths with a 34-25-10 record. However, their grip on that position has loosened slightly following a three-game losing streak which includes back-to-back losses on the road at the New York Rangers.

Washington are 33-31-7 for the season, but their form has tailed off recently. They have lost five of their last seven games, leaving them in real danger of missing out on the playoffs for the first time since the 2013-14 season.

This will be a crunch battle between two teams desperate to get their postseason hopes back on track, with star duo Sidney Crosby of the Penguins and Alexander Ovechkin of the Capitals likely to play key roles.

The two teams have met twice already this season, registering a win apiece, but both of these clashes took place in Washington. Home advantage could potentially give Pittsburgh the edge this weekend - the Penguins are 19-10-5 for the season at their home rink.

Vegas Golden Knights at Edmonton Oilers predictions

The Vegas Golden Knights lead the way in the Pacific Division at the time of the writing, but they will face a stern test of their credentials when they visit the team that sits third in the division - the Edmonton Oilers.

Edmonton are certainly a team in form, having won five of their last six games at the time of writing. No team in the NHL has been able to match them for goals, as the Oilers have scored a league high 274.

Connor McDavid (58) and Leon Draisaitl (44) have been responsible for 102 of those goals, and the duo are leading the way in terms of points for the season, with McDavid on 134, and Draisaitl on 104.

To put that into perspective, Vegas' leading points scorer is Jack Eichel on 54, but the Golden Knights have been a lot tighter defensively than their opponents, conceding 38 fewer goals than Edmonton.

The Oilers are on a three-game winning streak against the Golden Knights, most recently claiming a 4-3 victory in Vegas at the start of the year, with one of Edmonton's stars, Draisaitl, helping himself to two goals during that contest.

Boston Bruins at Carolina Hurricanes predictions

At the time of writing, only the Boston Bruins hold a better record in the NHL this season than the Carolina Hurricanes. The Bruins have also become the first and so far only team to have already secured their place in the playoffs.

Boston are certainly enjoying a season to remember, and their 53-11-5 record has been enhanced by a three-game winning streak on the road, which includes Sunday's 7-0 thrashing of the Buffalo Sabres.

David Pastrňák has been key to that success, with his goal against Buffalo taking his tally for the season to 48 - only Edmonton's McDavid has more. Boston also boast the NHL's strongest defence this season, with goaltender Linus Ullmark holding a league-best goals against average of 1.97.

While the Bruins top the Atlantic Division, the Hurricanes lead the way in the Metropolitan Division with a 45-15-8 record, and they could well become the next team to secure their place in the playoffs.

Rod Brind'Amour's team should have nothing to fear against the NHL's best team, as they have won four of the last five meetings with the Bruins, including a 4-1 success in Carolina when the teams last met at the end of January.

*Odds subject to change


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