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Columbus vs. Florida,
10-11-2018 - Pick and Prediction

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Game Snapshot with Current Line

#3 Columbus
Blue Jackets 5.5
#4 Florida
Panthers -140

Thursday, October 11, 2018 at 7:05pm

Image licensed from USA Today Sports

Game Stats

Columbus Blue Jackets

2 - 1


Florida Panthers

0 - 1


Featured Video from Scott Reichel

Having played their previous game last Saturday, the Florida Panthers (8th in Atlantic Division) are getting back into action while hosting the Columbus Blue Jackets (3rd in Metropolitan), who have just nabbed a home win against Colorado…

Jackets Overcome Colorado

The Columbus Blue Jackets (2-1-0) won on their own ice for the first time this season after posting a 5-2 victory against the Colorado Avalanche at Nationwide Arena on Tuesday. The hosts netted twice in the opening frame, with Nick Foligno (2 goals, 4 points this year) and Pierre-Luc Dubois (1 goal, 2 points) both getting on the scoreboard before the Avs came back with a two-goal performance of their own in the following frame. The third period, though, was all Jackets, who got the go-ahead snipe through Artemi Panarin (2 goals, 3 points), extended their lead with Foligno’s second strike of the night and rounded off the scoring with an empty-netter by Josh Anderson (2 goals, 2 points).

Goalie Sergei Bobrovsky made 25 saves and has now gone 1-1-0 for the current campaign with a 2.52 GAA and a .919 save percentage. The 30-year-old Russian has recorded a 12-1-2 career tally versus Florida with a 1.87 GAA and a .943 save percentage, while Foligno, who currently leads Columbus in scoring, has banked eight goals and 10 assists in 32 previous appearances against the Panthers. The Blue Jackets are presently scoring the 15th highest quantity of goals per game (3.00), while giving up the 8th lowest amount defensively (2.33). They are 19th in power play with a 13.3% success rate (2-for-15) and 16th in penalty kill with 75.0% efficiency (6-for-8).

Cats Lose Shootout In Tampa

The Florida Panthers (0-0-1) return to action after starting their newest season last week, when they had to settle for a 2-1 shootout defeat against the Tampa Bay Lightning at Amalie Arena on Saturday. The Cats were in a feisty mood, outshooting the Bolts 43-29, killing all of their three penalties and holding Nikita Kucherov, Tampa Bay’s top scorer last season, without a single shot on goal. Florida did, however, fail to convert on any of its own five power-play chances and managed to find the back of the net just once through 25-year-old rookie defenseman Jacob MacDonald, who scored six minutes into the first period before the Lightning tied the game midway through the final third with a shorty. The Bolts won the shootout with a count of 2-0.

Goalie Roberto Luongo stopped all 13 shots faced before leaving the game with a knee injury and has now been ruled out for two to four weeks. James Reimer, who finished last season with a 22-14-6 total on top of a 2.99 GAA and a .913 save percentage, made 15 saves subsequently, notching a 93.8% save rate. He is 2-6-1 against the Columbus Blue Jackets historically with a 3.62 GAA and a .891 save percentage. The Panthers, meanwhile, are netting the 2nd lowest amount of goals per game in 2018-19 (1.00), while conceding the absolute lowest quantity in their defensive zone (1.00). They are one of eight teams yet to score on power play (0-for-5), but top of the league in penalty kill, having cancelled out all three power-play opportunities by their opponent.

The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.

Full-Game Side Bet

The Panthers went 27-11-3 on their own ice last season and will definitely try to replicate their solid domestic form this year. Columbus has won nine of its past 12 road outings, but has found its trips to Florida quite frustrating, winning just one of its past five visits to BB&T Center. This is NOT going to be an easy one for the Blue Jackets…

Prediction: Florida Panthers

Full-Game Total Pick

Fourteen of the past 20 meetings between the two teams have gone under the total, so it is quite unlikely the game will see more than five goals netted. Especially with Sergei Bobrovsky having a low-scoring record against the Panthers, and the Blue Jackets not really finding the back of the net that regularly either…

Prediction: Under 5.5

Half-Time Side Pick

Florida has taken the lead after the first 20 minutes in its last four home games and will be eager to kick things off with a bang on its own ice. The Blue Jackets have scored in the first period of their last three road outings, but have failed to do so in three of their past five trips to BB&T Center.

Prediction: Florida Panthers

Half-Time Total Bet

An Under is a decent pick for the total of the whole game and not a bad bet for the first period either. Three of the past four meetings between the two sides have not gone past the one-goal mark in the initial 20 minutes, so…

Prediction: Under 1.5

Valdis Pans

Valdis got his first ever article published when he was 13, and has rarely stopped. He has worked for FHM, MTV Baltics and has done loads of freelance (from columns for Cosmopolitan magazine to helping with organization of Macy Gray’s shows in the Northern Europe). Speaks five different languages, loves pizza, American Horror Story and pipe organ music, and knows European soccer better than dates of his family members’ birthdays. Is an avid fan of ice-hockey too. He is a Latvian after all...


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