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NHL Odds: Washington Capitals vs. Pittsburgh Penguins

capitalsThe Pittsburgh Penguins and the Washington Capitals are set to tango on Thursday, October 13th at 7:00 ET at Consol Energy Arena in Pittsburgh, PA. We're breaking down the NHL odds for this clash, which can be seen on the NHL Network and Comcast Sports.

You aren't going to find many teams in the NHL, particularly in the Eastern Conference, with the talent level of the Caps and the Pens. However, on Thursday, there is probably going to be a lack of talent out there on the ice for Pittsburgh due to injury.

Of course, we're still watching the Sidney Crosby situation, as he is still on injured reserve after that concussion that he suffered last year. Sid the Kid hasn't been on the ice in a game in about 10 months at this point, and there's still a question as to when he'll be ready to go in 2011 - 12.

Evgeni Malkin missed most of the end of last season as well. He started off this year healthy, but he suffered a lower body injury that took him out of the lineup against the Edmonton Oilers. Malkin won't play in Tuesday's clash on the NHL betting odds against the Florida Panthers, and he is up in the air for Thursday as well.

The same could be said about Brooks Orpik, one of the best defenders on this team. Orpik had a sports hernia that has been operated on, and he is expected to remain out of the lineup until the middle to the end of this week, making him questionable at best for Thursday.

That being said, the Capitals have gotten off to a hot start this season, knocking off both the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Carolina Hurricanes at home. This is going to be their first bout on the NHL wagering odds on the road this year, but that really hasn't been that much of a problem historically for them.

The offense is back in command for Washington after a lackluster season last year. Alexander Ovechkin still hasn't found the back of the net, but Jason Chimera has three goals, while a total of seven players have multiple points in just two games.

We expect to see good things out of Tomas Vokoun in his first outing on the road this year as well. He allowed five goals against the Lightning on just 33 shots, but he was still able to get the victory in a shootout to get a win for his new team in his first start of the year.

It's been a long time coming for the Penguins to score much against Washington. They were shut out in the final two meetings of last season, and they only scored a total of three goals in the other two games.