Welcome back to another day of NHL Predictions. Each day, Last Word on Hockey takes a look at the games that are happening and gives our predictions for each one, breaking down head-to-head and other factors that may play in. We also have a featured game of the day, which is considered must-watch TV. Today’s featured game is the Montreal Canadiens vs Buffalo Sabres. Be sure to check out our other set of NHL predictions for today.
Florida Panthers vs Ottawa Senators
Head-to-Head: Panthers 1-0 Senators
Our opening game of NHL predictions has the Florida Panthers continue their Stanley Cup Playoff push. Florida’s projected starter is Sergei Bobrovsky, but always check social media before setting your fantasy lineup. The Panthers have lost three straight and sit three points behind the Pittsburgh Penguins for the final Eastern Wild Card spot. Florida’s defence has hit a rough patch in giving up 16 goals in the last three games.
Mads Sogaard is the projected starter for the Ottawa Senators, who sit seven points off a post-season spot. The Senators have lost three out of their last five, but do boast top 10 special team units. Ottawa has collected some big wins this season, but injuries and inconsistency have hurt the club.
Florida needs points, but Ottawa does well against tougher opponents. The Panthers scratch one out to stay alive.
Prediction: Panthers win 4-3.
Montreal Canadiens vs Ottawa Senators
Head-to-Hea d: Canadiens 1-1 Sabres
Our featured game of NHL predictions has the Canadiens trying to play spoiler to the Sabres. Jake Allen is the likely starter for Montreal, which has lost three of its last five games. However, the Habs thumped the Columbus Blue Jackets, 8-2, in the last game. New college signing Sean Farrell could be in the lineup after inking his entry-level contract. Montreal continues to deal with injuries like Josh Anderson being ruled out for the season. However, there is plenty of young talent on the Canadiens roster.
Eric Comrie is the projected starter for the Sabres, who earned back-to-back wins over the New Jersey Devils and New York Islanders. Buffalo is six points off the last post-season spot with 10 games to go. This playoff push may be coming too little too late for the Sabres. However, this is another team that’s showing a lot promise for the coming seasons. Buffalo has the third-best goal-scoring offence in the league.
The over/under is seven and both teams can score goals.
Prediction: Sabres win 5-4.
New Jersey Devils vs New York Islanders
Head-to-Head: Devils 1-1 Islanders
Our final game of NHL predictions is a Metropolitan Division battle between two likely playoff teams. Vitek Vanecek is the projected starter for a Devils team that has clinched a post-season spot. New Jersey is four points up on the New York Rangers for home-ice in the first round. The Devils have lost three of their last five and will need to keep getting points to keep the Blueshirts at bay. However, New Jersey has completed an amazing turnaround in just a short time.
Ilya Sorokin is the likely starter for the Islanders, who sit in the first wild card spot in the East. However, Pittsburgh is only one point behind them and Florida is only four points back. New York will still have to get some points to sew up their spot in the knockout round. The Isles have lost two straight games, but do have the defensive chops to stop any losing streak. New York has the seventh-best goals against, but New Jersey is fifth-best in that stat.
Divisional games are always tough to gauge, but the Devils get the overtime win. Both teams get a point in this one.
Prediction: Devils win 3-2 in overtime.
Main photo by: David Kirouac-USA TODAY Sports
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