The Florida Panthers have fallen on hard times, particularly on the defensive end of the ice – but Sunday’s opponent might just be the cure for what ails them as they entertain the lowly Ottawa Senators.
Florida has dropped three in a row while allowing a whopping 14 goals over that span – and that cold stretch has all but ended the Panthers’ chances of reaching the playoffs. The Sens have lost seven straight and are locked into last place in the NHL.
Senators vs Panthers Betting Analysis
Senators fans and bettors should wholly expect to see the team listed as a heavy underdog for the remainder of the season, no matter the opponent. Ottawa comes into this one having lost five consecutive games against Atlantic Division foes, and are just 5-18 SU in its past 23 road games against teams below .500 at home. The Panthers, meanwhile, have been a strong home play of late, having won four of their five games at BB&T Center.
The Panthers and the over-6.5 is the preferred play for the majority of Sports Interaction bettors, with 87 percent leaning toward the over and 71 percent preferring the over. And the Panthers certainly subscribe to that given their recent totals host streak, during which they’ve gone an incredible 7-0-1 O/U in their past eight. But the Senators, who fell 5-1 at Tampa on Saturday, have gone 5-0 to the under in their previous five games on the tail end of a back-to-bac.
Replacing head coach Guy Boucher with interim bench boss Marc Crawford didn’t improve the Senators’ fortunes Saturday; they were throttled 5-1 by a Lightning team that became the first in the league to reach the 50-win plateau. But on the plus side, Ottawa actually finished with a 37-34 advantage in shots in the one-sided loss; unfortunately, that has been a theme for this team, which fell to 7-12-0 SU when outshooting the opposition this season.
He won’t win the league MVP award or scoring title, but Panthers forward Aleksander Barkov has proven to be one of the top forwards in the NHL since the All-Star break. Barkov enters Sunday early-evening encounter having racked up 10 goals and 10 assists through 16 games in the second half of the season, with his 20 points ranking tied for sixth. He’s a whopping -250 to record a point against the Senators, compared to +170 to be held off the scoresheet.