Panthers Must Find Offense for Quick Home Stand

The Florida Panthers return home Thursday and must find offense in a hurry.

To kick off the second half of the NHL season, Florida trekked out on the road for three straight.

Get used to that Panthers fans, the Panthers will play seven of ten on the road starting next week.

It was an up-and-down three game set away from the BB&T Center, Florida lost two of three after a 1-0 overtime loss Wednesday at Columbus.

 

Despite taking only three out of a possible six points, the Panthers looked better against both Toronto and Columbus.

Each of those games were decided by a single goal, Florida lost a painful overtime game in Columbus 1-0 Tuesday.

Sergei Bobrovsky (20-13-5, 3.19 GAA, .901 SV%) stopped 44 out of 45 shots against the Blue Jackets.

 

His save percentage since November is .917 which is right in line with his career average (.918).

In the first half of the season the offense carried the weight, unfortunately with the improvement in net has come a decline on the other side.

Florida has endured their first two shutouts this season in the last three games.

An injury to Sasha Barkov has not helped, the Panthers captain is still day-to-day.

The Vegas Golden Knights (27-21-7, 61 points) visit the BB&T Center Thursday, winners of two out of three.

Vegas attempts the second most shots in the NHL per game (34.1) and sport a top 10 power play.

Former Panthers Reilly Smith (42 points) and Jonathan Marchessault (37 points) are among the top scorers for Vegas.

Smith is tied for the team lead with Max Pacioretty with 21 goals.

The Panthers allow 32.4 shots per game, 24th in the NHL.

Florida will need Jonathan Huberdeau and Evgenii Davodov to step up in Barkov’s absence.

Mike Hoffman has just two points in his last three games since the break after having his 10 game point streak snapped.

The Panthers will need a complete defensive effort in front of Bobrovsky to hold off Vegas.

Look for an energized team after a few days off and returning to home ice.

Puck drops Thursday at 7PM Eastern.

 

 

 

 

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