[7:00 PM] Avalanche @ Panthers

Who will WIN this matchup?

Colorado Avalanche (3-1-0)

@ Florida Panthers (2-1-1)


Starting Goalies:

Semyon Varlamov(COL): Confirmed

Roberto Luongo(FLA): Confirmed


Current odds:

Colorado Avalanche: (+145)

Florida Panthers: (-165)


The Avalanche is coming off a 4-0 shutout win over the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday night, while the Panthers enter the Saturday’s matchup following a 4-2 loss to the Washington Capitals, their first regulation loss of the season. Florida is 2-1-1 so far this year with wins over the New Jersey Devils and the Detroit Red Wings.

Saturday’s game will mark the fourth in six nights for the Avs and will conclude a tough early-season road trip that’s pitted Colorado against some of the Eastern Conference’s top teams. The Avalanche is 2-1-0 through the first three games of the trip, with wins over the Pittsburgh Penguins and Lightning.

Goaltender Semyon Varlamov will get the nod in net once again, making his third straight start and coming off a 27-save shutout performance on Thursday. Varlamov stopped all 27 shots that he faced in Colorado’s shutout win in Tampa Bay on Thursday. It was an excellent performance from the Russian netminder, who is now 2-1-0 with a 2.67 GAA and .916 SV% in three games this season. A tough matchup on Thursday didn’t seem to matter, but he draws another difficult matchup tonight in Florida. The Panthers are 2-1-1 and are averaging 2.75 goals per game.

Luongo allowed four goals on 29 shots in the Panthers’ loss to the Capitals on Thursday. It was Luongo’s first loss of the year, but he still maintains a strong 1.98 GAA and .920 SV% through three starts. Tonight he faces an Avalanche team that is off to a 3-1-0 start while averaging and impressive 3.50 goals per game and that includes getting shutout on Tuesday.

The Avalanche is 4-for-14 (28.6%) on the power play so far this season, which ranks sixth in the National Hockey League.

Offense has been a strength for Colorado, which is averaging 3.50 goals per game, tied for seventh in the league. That scoring punch will be put to the test by a Florida team that currently ranks sixth in goals against per game, allowing just 2.25.


StreakSmarts Pick: Florida Panthers

Confidence: 5/10

StreakSmarter Pick