Today's Free Picks for
Posted at 12:15 PM EST.
9:05 PM EST. OT included. We’re going back to this Panthers well one more time here because we know this team fights hard, they’re good and they’re underpriced. They’re also still in the playoff hunt after winning four of their last five games. Florida is nine points behind Carolina for the final Wild Card spot but they have four games in hand on the ‘Canes, thus, this five-game trip that they embark on starting here will absolutely define their season. The Panthers are healthy and playing well. Over their past 10 games, Florida ranks 5th and 11th respectively in 5v5 Adjusted Score and Venue CF/60 and Corsi For %. The Panthers only loss over their last five games was against the Kings last time out but they held a dominating possession edge and a 36-25 shots advantage too. We’re not sure which goaltender will get the call but it’s not going to sway us one way or the other. James Reimer is ready to return to duty but backup Harri Sateri has been very good and we prefer him. Either way, this wager is very much a fade on the Oilers while at the same time getting behind a live pooch in a crucial stretch of games. Often, a team will play its best game in the first game of an extended trip.
The Oilers are in a difficult spot here both mentally and physically. After a three-game road trip in California, the Oilers are only in Edmonton for one game then fly back out on the road for three more. It all amounts to one long road trip, seven games in seven different cities in 12 days. This would be the fourth of those seven games. Furthermore, the Oilers return home knowing that the season is down the drain, as they’re 16 points out of a playoff spot with 28 games to go and have to climb over five other teams to get there. In other words, it’s over. Now comes the hard part, which is finding the motivation and determination to play hard all the way to the finish line even though there is nothing left to play for. With expectations for the season so high and the reality that it’s over, the long hike to April has started. The Oilers are a bit banged up too with Ryan Nugent Hopkins and Adam Larsson still on the rack and now Drake Caggiula and defenceman Andrej Sekera will be joining them. The Oilers metrics are weak overall, very weak defensively and they’re also weak up the middle. They have one strength that we don’t have to point out because you all know his name. Consider the Panthers a very live pup here.
Open an account today at Pinnacle Sports and take advantage of their -104 style pricing on sides and totals, which is 60% better than other sportsbooks.
Florida +122 (Risking 2 units - To Win: 2.44)