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Minnesota Wild vs. Florida Panthers prediction, picks, and best bets from handicapper JT Miller. Hockey handicapper JT Miller gives us three picks for tonight's game between the Wild and Panthers.
ANALYSIS

Minnesota Wild vs. Florida Panthers Prediction: Top Squads Should Light the Lamp

After a hot start to the week, I was really excited about two great over spots Wednesday and we got burned. Four of the top ten offenses in the league squared off and went 1/15 on the powerplay with some missed empty netters. It happens.

The season is long and sometimes the puck (literally) does not bounce your way, this sport is weird; we trust what we know and the reads that have worked for us all season long. Win more than we lose, that’s the goal, and what a better spot to get back at those two snoozers Wednesday than the potential fireworks we are going to see in this one tonight.

Wild vs. Panthers Start Time, Where to Watch, and Odds

Date: Friday, February 18

Game Time: 8:00 pm ET

Where to Watch: ESPN+/HULU

Puck Line: Panthers -1 (+160)

Click Here for Wild vs Panthers Odds

Wild vs. Panthers Total Movement

Minnesota Wild vs. Florida Panthers Prediction

The Florida Panthers stay on the road tonight as they travel to Saint Paul to take on the Minnesota Wild. I really don’t have to set the mood for this one; both of these squads are absolutely electric and Florida won a 5-4 barnburner in their only meeting this season thus far.

At home, Minnesota is putting up 4.55 GF/G and is one of the only three teams other than Colorado and Florida averaging over that four-goal mark. Florida is better at home averaging nearly five goals a game but are still just as potent on the road and averaging 3.24 GF/G on the road this season. 

Home and road defensive splits say both sides are good to give up about three goals in this one, but the offense is all I really care about. This game is different than almost 90% of the games they play throughout the course of the season for both teams; both squads are equally talented. The Florida Panthers undoubtedly hold an edge over Minnesota as they are the better all-around squad and are far better built for a cup run.

We’re not in the playoffs yet though and this is just one hockey game that both teams really want to win. I expect the pace to be off the rails in the first period and we should see north of 75 SOG in this game. I am not a huge fan of biting on an over 6.5 line so when I do it is usually because I believe this one could be 3-3 by the end of the second period. 

Goals should flow early. The first period Over 1.5 has hit in over 64% of games for Minnesota this season, the fourth-best in the league. They are complemented by Florida who is a league second-best first period in terms of that play hitting in nearly 67% of their games this season. 

If the first period is going to go over, you usually believe the GIFT will hit; it is much easier to score two goals in twenty minutes than two in ten minutes. Both teams are hitting over 60% on the season in this category as well and are 7-3 across their last 10 meetings. 

Those stats tell you everything you need to know about the power these two teams possess and the pace at which they have been playing. The Wild play their best hockey in Saint Paul and I genuinely believe they will play a great game tonight and they will look to give Sergio Bobrovsky a lot of trouble. 

Florida just ground out a thrilling late victory in Carolina and now have their skates under them after their extended break; they are looking to do nothing less than score five goals and beat them again here tonight.

I got on the 1st period over yesterday at a crazy -141 around noon but that is long gone now so we get creative with how we approach the game. Am taking a few plus money stabs at this one here to generate value and think they have some serious potential and complement our full gameplay nicely.

As always, best of luck to those who tail! We ride!

Wild vs. Panthers Picks

  • BTTS 1st Period (+135)
  • 1st Period Over 1.5/Full game Over 5.5 (+134)
  • Over 6.5 (-120)

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Article Author

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Born and raised in St. Louis, JT is a young gun in the industry but has already established himself as one of the sharpest. Some refer to him as the "King of the Ice" as a result of his dominance in the NHL, which has been his claim to fame. However, he also excels in other markets including the NFL, MLB, and NCAAF. You can follow JT on Twitter at @RickyBobbyBets.

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