2019-20 NHL – Florida Panthers @ Tampa Bay Lightning Preview & Prediction

THE FACTS

When is Florida Panthers @ Tampa Bay Lightning taking place? Friday 4th October, 2019 – 00:00 (UK)

Where is Florida Panthers @ Tampa Bay Lightning taking place? Amalie Arena

What television channel is Florida Panthers @ Tampa Bay Lightning on? Check back here closer to the match for TV info

Where can I stream Florida Panthers @ Tampa Bay Lightning? Check back here closer to the match for live streaming info

Where can I get tickets for Florida Panthers @ Tampa Bay Lightning? https://www.nhl.com/tickets

What was the outcome in the last meeting? Florida Panthers 2 – 5 Tampa Bay Lightning

THE TEAM NEWS

FLORIDA PANTHERS

  • The Panthers ended the 2018-19 NHL season on a two-game losing streak and even though they ended in 10th place in the Eastern Conference, they were quite far from reaching a playoff spot.
  • C Aleksander Barkov paced the Panthers in points during the 2018-19 season with 96 (35 goals, 61 assists) while LW Jonathan Huberdeau had 92 points thanks to 30 goals and 62 helpers. LW Mike Hoffman was the top-scoring threat, however, after finishing the year with 36 goals, as well as 34 assists.
  • Florida’s free agency period was quite active, and they acquired one of the premiere goaltenders in the league when they signed Sergei Bobrovsky to a seven-year contract after he led the NHL in shutouts last season with the Columbus Blue Jackets. They also inked deals for D Anton Stralman (three years), RW Brett Connolly (four years) and RW Noel Acciari (three years).

TAMPA BAY LIGHTNING

  • The Lightning were the best side in the NHL by a huge margin during the regular season as they paced the league with 128 points. However, they couldn’t repeat those same performances during the playoffs and suffered a shocking first-round exit after getting swept by the Columbus Blue Jackets in four games.
  • Undoubtedly, RW Nikita Kucherov is Tampa Bay’s biggest star and is coming off a career year where he led the NHL in total points with 128, thanks to 41 goals and 87 assists. C Steven Stamkos came just two points shy of reaching the 100-point mark (45 goals, 53 assists) and C Brayden Point had 41 goals with 51 assists in the regular season.
  • The Lightning were quite shy during the free agent market since they already have a core in place. They only gave either one-year or two-year deals and the top signings were backup goalie Curtis McElhinney, D Luke Schenn and D Luke Witkowski.

THE PREDICTION

The Panthers have improved massively on both sides of the puck this offseason thanks to some great signings but the Lightning continue to be one of the top franchises in the league despite their disastrous playoff performance last season. Expect Tampa Bay to dominate the game and come out on top by a sizeable margin that could easily be over 1.5 goals.

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