Buffalo Sabres vs. Florida Panthers Betting Preview

Two clubs that are facing each other for the fourth and final time this season, the Buffalo Sabres and the Florida Panthers clash at the BB&T Center for an Atlantic Division showdown. The game will get going at 7 p.m. ET on Saturday, April 7 and it can be watched live on Fox SportsNet Florida.

Buffalo Sabres vs. Florida Panthers Odds

Florida is 42-38 straight up (SU) and has earned 2.0 units for moneyline bettors this year. That early-season winning percentage is a surprising improvement over the 35-47 record from last years regular season campaign. Of the teams 80 regular season contests, 40 have gone under the total, while 38 have gone over and just two have pushed. The team is 26-14 SU at home this year.

The Panthers have converted on 18.9 percent of their power play chances this season, a figure that’s right around league average. On the other hand, their penalty kill is ranked 17th overall, and they’ve successfully killed off 80.5 percent of all penalties.

As a team, the Panthers have been penalized 4.1 times per game overall this season, and 2.0 per game over their last five contests home outings. The teams had to stave off opposition power plays for just 5.5 minutes per game over their last 10 outings, in total.

Sporting a .911 save percentage and 28.1 saves per game, James Reimer (20-22-6) has been the top option in goal for Florida this season. If Florida chooses to rest him, however, it could turn to Roberto Luongo (18-16-16 record, .929 save percentage, 2.48 goals against average).

The Panthers will continue to lean on the leadership from Aleksander Barkov and Vincent Trocheck. Barkov (78 points) has tallied 27 goals and 51 assists and has recorded multiple points on 22 different occasions this year. Trocheck has 30 goals and 43 assists to his name and has notched at least one point in 52 games.

On the other side of the ice, Buffalo is 25-56 straight up (SU) and has lost 17.8 units for bettors taking the moneyline thus far. Through 81 regular season matches, 38 of its games have gone under the total, while 37 have gone over and just five have pushed. The Sabres are 14-26 SU as the visiting team this season.

The Sabres have converted on 18.9 percent of their power play opportunities this season, a figure that’s right around league average. On the other hand, its penalty kill unit is ranked 22nd overall and it’s successfully defended 78.0 percent of all penalties.

Buffalo’s skaters have been whistled for penalties 3.4 times per game this season, and 2.8 per game over their last five on the road. The teams been forced to defend opponent power plays just 5.7 minutes per game over their last 10 outings.

Robin Lehner (.908 save percentage and 3.01 goals against average) has been the main option in goal for Buffalo. Lehner is averaging 26.7 saves per game and owns a 14-39-9 record.

Jack Eichel (25 goals, 38 assists) has been one of the most vital playmaking threats for the visiting Sabres.

Buffalo Sabres vs. Florida Panthers Betting Predictions

Free NHL Pick: SU Winner – Panthers, O/U – Over

Betting Notes

  • Over Buffalo’s last ten games, nine of them have been decided by two or more goals (the team is 1-8 in those games).
  • Buffalo has allowed 3.4 goals per game this year, but is allowing 5.3 goals per contest over its three-game losing skid.
  • The extra-man advantage could have a key role in this matchup. The Sabres are 9-24 when they serve fewer penalty minutes than their opponent and 21-39 in games where they’re in the box for fewer than 10 penalty minutes, total. The Panthers are 19-21 when they serve fewer penalty minutes than the opposition and 22-24 when their penalty minutes are in the single digits.
  • Buffalo is 1-2 in games decided by a shootout this season while Florida is 3-3 in shootouts.
  • Florida might have an advantage if it’s a tight one late. The teams 20-17 in games decided by one goal, while Buffalo is just 11-22 in such games.
  • The under has hit in four of Florida’s last five games.
  • Florida has allowed 3.0 goals per game overall this season, but has allowed just 1.7 per matchup over its three-game winning streak.
  • Florida skaters have averaged 21.6 giveaways over its last five home games, a rise over its season average of 13.0 giveaways per game (ranked 32nd).
  • Buffalo is ranked sixth this season with 7.5 giveaways per game. That figure has trended higher recently, as it’s averaged 10.3 giveaways over its last 10 games and 9.2 giveaways over its last five.