Columbus Blue Jackets at Florida Panthers Preview
The Columbus Blue Jackets continue their difficult road trip, and they are once again playing in the state of Florida. Columbus is set to take on the Florida Panthers on Saturday night, and this will be another tough test for the Blue Jackets.
Columbus has now lost five of their last six games, and they are starting to fade in the Central Division Standings. The Blue Jackets have racked up just 36 points this season, putting them in sixth place in the division.
Florida comes into this game with 52 points on the season, and they are now in a first-place tie with the Tampa Bay Lightning. The Panthers were expected to be a much-improved team in 2021, but they continue to exceed expectations.
The Columbus Blue Jackets are underdogs in this matchup as the Florida Panthers are -150 according to Vegas odds.
Blue Jackets Just Can’t Find Offense
The Columbus Blue Jackets are averaging less than 2.5 goals per game this season, and this has been a major issue for them. Columbus just hasn’t been able to find much scoring outside of Oliver Bjorkstrand, and they have also struggled on the power play.
Bjorkstrand leads the team with 13 goals and 17 assists, but at some point, he needs some help from his teammates. The Blue Jackets have converted on the power play less than 15 percent of the time, and that number also needs to improve.
The Blue Jackets have done a nice job of limiting opponents of late, and that could help them stay in this game against the Florida Panthers.
Panthers Playing With Pace
The Florida Panthers are averaging 3.27 goals per game this season while also allowing nearly 2.7 goals against. Florida wants to turn this into a fast-paced hockey game, and few teams have been able to keep up with them this season.
Jonathan Huberdeau leads the way for Florida with 28 assists and 42 total points, and he is always dangerous with the puck on his stick. Florida has a ton of young talent on this roster, and those players just continue to get better as the season goes along.
The Panthers have won four straight games in a pretty dominating fashion, and they will have momentum on their side on Saturday night.
Columbus Must Slow Things Down
There is no doubt that Columbus is an underdog in this game, especially the way they have been playing of late. Columbus just has not been able to find a consistent offensive attack, and that could be a real problem in this game.
Florida will give up some goals, but they also have the ability to put up points in a hurry. This Panthers team is a legitimate Stanley Cup title contender this season, and that Offense is simply hard to stop.
Columbus has shown the ability to pull off some upsets this season, but this is also a game that could get away from them in a hurry.
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