Columbus Blue Jackets (8-4 SU, 6-6 PL, 6-6-0 O/U) vs Florida Panthers (4-7 SU, 5-6 PL, 9-2-0 O/U)
When: 7:35 PM EDT, Thursday, November 2, 2017
Where: BB&T Center in Sunrise, Florida
Lines: Columbus -110/ Florida +100
National League Hockey action on Thursday evening and the Metro Division will square off with the Atlantic Division as the Columbus Blue Jackets take on the Florida Panthers at BB&T Center in Sunrise, Florida. The Blue Jackets are off a 4-3 Shootout win at home over the Bruins, while the Panthers are off an 8-5 home loss at the hands of the Lightning. Goalie Probables: Sergei Bobrovsky will get the nod for the Blue Jackets and the Panthers will counter with James Reimer.
Blue Jackets Fend Off Comeback From The Bruins
The Columbus Blue Jackets are off to a nice start to the year and they come in off a nice 4-3 home win over the Boston Bruins. They have now won three of their last four games. The game started out very well as they had a 3-0 lead at the 8:27 mark on the 2nd period, but the Bruins scored once in the 2nd period and two more times in the 3rd period to send the game to OT. No one scored in the extra session and the Blue Jackets finally won the game in a shootout with Oliver Bjorkstrand getting the deciding goal. Also scoring in the win was David Savard, which was his 2nd of the year, Boone Jenner, which was his 1st of the year and Tyler Motte, which was his 1st of the year, The Blue Jackets have gone 3-2 on the road so far. Grabbing the win against the Bruins was Sergei Bobrovsky, who stopped 27 of the 30 shots that he faced in the game. He has gone 7-2 with a 1.97 GAA and a .934 save percentage on the year overall, including 2-0 with a 2.41 GAA and a .915 save percentage on the road. In his career, he has gone 90-64 with a 2.45 GAA on the road and 33-24 with a 2.38 GAA during the month of November, plus he is 49-35 with a 2.35 GAA against the Atlantic Division, while against the Panthers in his career he is 9-3 with a 1.94 GAA.
The Blue Jackets have been an average offensive team so far as they come in ranked 18th in the league in scoring at 3.00 gpg, while also ranking 3rd in shots taken (36.4 spg) and 31st in power play conversions, converting on 8.6% of their chances. At the defensive end of the ice, they have been solid as they come in ranked 4th in goals allowed, giving up 2.50 gpg, while also ranking 8th in shots allowed (30.9 spg) and 6th in penalty kill, allowing teams to convert on 15.6% of their chances.
Five Is Not Enough For The Panthers
The Florida Panthers have been solid on offense this year so far, but their problems have come on the other end of the ice, in their last game, they faced the high-scoring Tampa Bay Lightning at home and they scored five goals in that game, but that just wasn’t enough as James Reimer and Antti Niemi combined to allow seven goals in an 8-5 loss. James Reimer got the start and allowed five goals on 19 shot attempts, before being replaced by Antti Niemi, who allowed two goals on 18 shot attempts. Niemi took the loss in the game and is now 0-4 with a 6.92 GAA on the year. He started the year with Pitt and this was his first action with the Panthers. James Reimer should get the start here and he has gone 3-4 with a 3.70 GAA on the year overall, including 2-2 with a 3.96 GAA at home. In his career, he has gone 54-59 with a 2.72 GAA in his home games and 12-14 with a 2.74 GAA during the month of November, plus he is 13-24 with a 2.72 GAA against the Metro Division, while against the Blue Jackets in his career he has gone 2-5 with a 3.56 GAA. Scoring for the Panthers in the loss was Aaron Ekblad, which was his 3rd of the year, Aleksander Barkov, which was his 4th of the year, Jonathan Huberdeau, which was his 5th of the year, Jamie McGinn, which was his 3rd of the year and Evgenii Dadonov, which was his 6th of the year,
Florida enters this contest ranked 6th in the league in scoring at 3.64 gpg, while also ranking 5th in shots taken (34.6 spg) and 15th in power play conversions, converting on 17.4% of their chances. At the defensive end of the ice, they have not been that good as they come in ranked 30th in goals allowed, giving up 3.91 gpg, while also ranking 31st in shots allowed (36.5 spg) and 29th in penalty kill, allowing teams to convert on 27.3% of their chances.
- 16-5 in their last 21 games playing on 2 days rest
- 35-16 in their last 51 vs. a team with a losing record
- 7-19 in their last 26 vs. the Eastern Conference
- 20-47 in their last 67 home games vs. a team with a winning road record
The Florida Panthers are really struggling right now and most of their issues have come from their play in the crease. The Blue Jackets have struggled to score of late, but they are a very good offensive team and James Reimer is 2-5 with a 3.56 GAA in his career against the Blue Jackets. Sergei Bobrovsky is 2-0 on the road with a 2.41 GAA and 7-2 with a 1.97 GAA overall, while against the Panthers in his career he has gone 9-3 with a 1.94 GAA. The Jackets are the better team here and have a huge edge in the crease, which should be enough to lead them to victory in this one.