Florida Panthers (35-26-8) at New York Islanders (35-23-10)
NHL Hockey: Saturday, August 1, 2020 at 4:00 pm (Scotiabank Arena)
The Line: New York Islanders -138 / Florida Panthers +115 --- Over/Under: 5.5 Click to Get Latest Betting Odds
The New York Islanders and Florida Panthers meet Saturday in game one of the NHL East Qualifying action at the Scotiabank Arena.
The New York Islanders entered the NHL break on a rough seven-game losing streak. The New York Islanders are averaging 2.8 goals per game and are scoring on 17.3 percent of their power play opportunities. Brock Nelson leads New York with 26 goals, Mathew Barzal has 41 assists and Josh Bailey has 94 shots on goal. Defensively, the New York Islanders are allowing 2.8 goals per game and are killing 80.7 percent of their opponents power plays. Semyon Varlamov has given up 110 goals on 1,278 shots faced and Thomas Greiss has allowed 73 goals on 838 shots.
The Florida Panthers entered the NHL break losing six of their last nine games and looking like they were going to underachieve yet again. The Florida Panthers are averaging 3.3 goals per game and are scoring on 21.2 percent of their power play opportunities. Mike Hoffman leads Florida with 29 goals, Jonathan Huberdeau has 55 assists and Evgenii Dadonov has 167 shots on goal. Defensively, the Florida Panthers are allowing 3.2 goals per game and are killing 78.5 percent of their opponents power plays. Sergei Bobrovsky has given up 151 goals on 1,505 shots faced and Sam Montembeault has allowed 39 goals on 356 shots.
The Panthers are 2-6 in their last 8 games as an underdog, 1-5 in their last 6 Saturday games and 7-2 in their last 9 games playing on 2 days rest. The Islanders are 1-10 in their last 11 Saturday games, 7-3 in their last 10 games playing on 2 days rest and 0-7 in their last 7 overall. The under is 5-0 in Panthers last 5 overall. The under is 9-4 in Islanders last 13 overall. The Panthers are 0-4 in the last 4 meetings. The under is 12-3-2 in the last 17 meetings.
The New York Islanders have won four straight meetings against the Panthers and are probably the more trustworthy team because of their defense. However, the Islanders didn't look good the last time we saw them as they entered the break on a seven-game losing streak. The Florida Panthers were hit and miss this season and underachieving like they've done most of the last few years. However, the Panthers are deadly offensively when they have it going and they're led by a coach who has been there done that. If the Panthers can find their offensive magic, the Islanders could have a hard time finding the firepower to respond, even if the Panthers defense is questionable at best.
I'll take a shot with the Panthers and the plus money in game one of this series.