Sports. Honestly. Since 2011

New York Rangers Vs Florida Panthers Third Round Preview

NHL predictions

Rangers Vs Panthers Odds and Promos

Series Odds (via FanDuel) Rangers +118, Panthers -142

Series Spread (via FanDuel) Rangers +1.5 -162, Panthers -1.5 +132

Total Series Games (via FanDuel) Over 5.5 -188, Under 5.5 +152

If you predicted an Eastern Conference Final between the Florida Panthers and the New York Rangers, no one would have batted an eye. Both hockey clubs were two of the league’s best from the beginning to the end of the season. Paul Maurice and Peter Laviolette led squads that showcased an aggressive, in-your-face style of hockey. The champions of the Atlantic and the champions of the Metropolitan are preparing for battle, and signs are pointing toward an all-time matchup. In one corner is a team that reached the Stanley Cup Finals just one year ago, labelled as the “team of destiny” after upsetting the greatest regular season team in league history. In the other corner, this season’s so-called “team of destiny” coming off of a series clincher that will be talked about for years to come.

Rangers Vs Panthers 2023-24 History

Surprisingly, the Rangers have found themselves in unfamiliar territory. They have owned the season matchup against their last two opponents in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. First, it was the Washington Capitals where they were split at 2-2. Next, they owned a 2-1 season lead over the Carolina Hurricanes. Now, they are up against a Panthers team that has had the Blueshirts number all season long.

In their first meeting on December 29 in Sunrise, Sam Reinhart earned himself a brace in a 4-3 victory. Their second meeting of the season shifted to New York, yet the result stayed the same. Another two-goal game from Reinhart saw Florida on the winning side by a score of 4-2. The season finale finally went the Rangers way, although it took more than the minimum 60 minutes. Evidently, it would be Artemi Panarin notching two goals in a 4-3 shootout victory for the Blueshirts.

What does tell you? Expect a series similar to New York’s most recent one against Carolina: one-goal games, lots of scoring, and a slight increase in physicality. The more I write, the more I am convinced that this series will go the distance.

Rangers Vs Panthers Keys to the Series

What The Panthers Need To Do To Go Back-To-Back

Last year’s run for Florida was remarkable, to say the least. Conquering the beast known as the Boston Bruins, taming the Toronto Maple Leafs, and slaying the Carolina Hurricanes is one heck of a resume. Although it was a miraculous run, they ended up running into a buzzsaw known as the Vegas Golden Knights. In just five games, the door was shut on Maurice and the Panthers. Now, they are the buzzsaw. They are now the giant that needs to be slain.

Florida’s defensive core has been impressive when it comes to two-way hockey, something Charlie Conway had a hard time adjusting to while at Eden Hall. Eventually, the Rangers are going to have their hands full with Florida’s offensive pressure, even from their blue line. Players such as Brandon Montour and Gustav Forsling are going to be integral in putting goals past Igor Shesterkin.

Finally, Florida needs to give New York a taste of their own medicine. The Rangers were enforcers against Washington, yet had a run for their money against Carolina. While staying disciplined, Florida needs to rough up New York and let them know that they are not the bullies in this series. If they can do this without taking penalties, Florida has a great chance to return to their second straight Stanley Cup Final.

What The Rangers Need To Do To Return To Glory

The Chris Kreider legacy game is almost a week old. Now, New York will look to ride that momentum into the Conference Finals against the Panthers. With a lack of depth scoring at the moment, the big guns (like Kreider) need to fire on all cylinders. Although talented, Sergei Bobrovsky needs to be tested early and often. The top two lines, along with the play of Shesterkin, were involved in all four wins against Carolina. Game One belonged to Mika Zibanejad, Game Two was Vincent Trocheck‘s Double Overtime winner, Game Three was Primetime Bread, and Game Six was the Christopher James Kreider Legacy Game.

In 1994, the memorable moment belonged to Stephane Matteau. It is now time for a new hero to etch his name into the history books. Someone like Alexis Lafrenière or Filip Chytil will look to be the hero that sends New York to their first Stanley Cup Final in ten years.

Prediction and Best Bets

Lastly, if you are confident in someone not named Artemi Panarin to lead the series in scoring, then there is value here. For Florida, Sam Reinhart will be a busy man and he is valued at +700 to be the series leader in points. New York’s pick is our favourite pseudo-lawyer Vincent Trocheck. Facing off against another former opponent, Trocheck is valued at +1500 to be the points leader.

Both teams have similar playing styles. They both make it hard for their opponents to breathe and feel comfortable while on the ice. Both teams can score. Their top sixes are two of the best units in the entire league. Both teams have great coaches. These two bench leaders are capable of finding a way to lift Lord Stanley above their heads. However, only one team has a goaltender like Igor Shesterkin.

Prediction: Rangers in 7

Main Photo: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports


More Posts

Send Us A Message