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Florida Panthers Odds - No scoring = no playoffs again for the Panthers

Posted by Don Melrose on 9/21/2009 7:51:43 AM
NHL betting linesFlorida almost stunned the NHL betting community by just missing the playoffs, but they appear to still be in a rebuilding mode as they traded away their two top stars. The Panthers have some young talent and a veteran blue line, but odds are a lack of offensive output will be Florida’s downfall in the upcoming season.

Florida Panthers Odds: +5000 to win the Stanley Cup

  • Top-six forwards are solid, but not overwhelming
  • Can the defense survive without Jay Bouwmeester?
  • DeBoer got the Panthers close in first season of coaching, but a step back looms

Florida Panthers odds maker breakdown: OFFENSE
The Panthers were tied for 13th in goals scored last season, and David Booth notched 31 to lead the way. He’ll be on the top line with Nathan Horton and Stephen Weiss, who led the team with 61 points, but he didn’t go away from his defensive responsibilities as he was tops on the Panthers with a +19 rating. Those three are all 26 or younger, so they’ll have to start stepping it up. However, there isn’t much outside of the top line besides Michael Frolik and Cory Stillman and, who will be 36 in December. However, Frolik burst onto the scene last year and he’s only going to be 22 this season. Also, they lost their best offensive defenseman in Jay Bouwmeester.

Florida Panthers odds makter breakdown: DEFENSE
Florida was 10th in the NHL in goals allowed, and they could be better this year if Bryan Allen can come back from a serious knee injury that caused him to miss virtually all of last season. Jordan Leopold joined the team in the Bouwmeester deal, but last season was one of the worst defensive campaigns of his career. The Panthers will have to replace veterans Karlis Skrastins and Nick Boynton, and they’ll try with Ville Koistinen and Dennis Seidenberg, who came from Nashville and Carolina, respectively. These players are solid enough, but they won’t raise a team’s sports betting odds.

Florida Panthers odds maker breakdown: GOALTENDING
Tomas Vokoun will be the No.1 goalie heading into his third season in the Sunshine State, but he has to be more consistent. He got off to a horrible start, played well from December to March, then regressed. However, he started working out earlier than he ever has to get ready for this year, and when he’s on, he’s a legitimate top-10 goalie. Scott Clemmensen replaces Craig Anderson as the No.2 goalie, and he’s coming off a career year as he got a chance to shine when Martin Brodeur went down with an injury in New Jersey. Coach Pete DeBoer said that Clemmensen would get a solid look, but online betting players should count on Vokoun in the pipes for the Panthers.

Florida Panthers odds maker breakdown: SPECIAL TEAMS
Florida’s power play was 24th in the league, and it took a huge blow with the loss of Bouwmeester, who led the team in points with the man advantage. Bruan McCabe should take over as the point man now, but he’s no Bouwmeester.

It was better for the Panthers on the penalty kill, as they were ninth in the league. Radek Dvorak had four short-handed goals, and defenseman Keith Ballard was also solid at the back. If Allen comes back healthy and Leopold refocuses defensively, it should be another good year for the Panthers’ penalty-killing unit.

Florida Panthers odds maker breakdown: SEASON OUTLOOK
The Panthers surprised everyone to miss the playoffs on the last day of the season, and DeBoer deserves a lot of credit for what he did in his first season in Florida. The Panthers showed a lot of guts in trading longtime captain Olli Jokinen and Bouwmeester to Calgary, and now it’s up to the young guys to prove the management right. However, there may not be enough goals to launch the Panthers into the playoffs, unless a team like Carolina or the Rangers take a step back, and teams like Ottawa and Toronto are also improved. It’ll be close again, but I’d bet against the Panthers making the postseason for the first since the 1999-00 season.

For more NHL futures and Stanley Cup odds throughout the season, visit the offshore sportsbook at

Don Melrose is's hockey expert.



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