There is no doubt the Florida Panthers know how to win at home. Starting tonight against the Dallas Stars, they need to start figuring out how to win on the road.
The Panthers boast the best home record in the NHL at 18-3, their play in Sunrise a huge reason why they are sitting a point behind the Tampa Bay Lightning in the NHL standings.
Going into Thursday’s game, the Panthers have lost eight of their past nine road games — their only win coming against the Coyotes out in Glendale.
“It’s fun to play at home. You come out ready and we have energy and now we have to bring that on the road,’’ Patric Hornqvist said Tuesday night.
“We have to play with a little more confidence on the road and I think this road trip here coming up is a good test for us. We just have to go out there and earn it and play the right way with a little swagger.”
Of course, things are not as dire as they sound.
The Panthers have only played 12 road games this season and have points in eight of them with four wins.
Only that means Florida has a lot of road games left on this schedule.
Packing up some of that Sunrise Mojo — whatever that may be — would certainly help.
— The Panthers head into the game riding a four-game winning streak. Of course, all of those wins came at home.
Florida outscored its opponents 24-10 in those games, setting a franchise record.
— Florida will be without backup goalie Spencer Knight after he joined the team’s growing Covid list.
Per Steve Goldstein, neither Sam Reinhart nor Mason Marchment were on the ice Thursday so they remain in protocol. Sam Bennett, suspended for the following two games, traveled and is practicing with the team.
FLORIDA PANTHERS ON DECK
FLORIDA PANTHERS AT DALLAS STARS
- When: Thursday, 8:30 p.m.
- Where: AmericanAirlines Center, Dallas
- Tickets: CLICK HERE
- TV/Streaming: Bally Sports Florida
- Radio: WQAM 560, SiriusXM
- NHL Betting Odds from FanDuel: Florida favored (PL -1.5 +205) — (ML -126) — U/O 6.5
- Last season: Florida won 6-2
- All-time regular season series: Florida leads 23-19-1, 3 ties
PROJECTED FLORIDA PANTHERS LINEUP
23 Carter Verhaeghe // 16 Sasha Barkov // 98 Maxim Mamin
11 Jonathan Huberdeau // 15 Anton Lundell // 10 Anthony Duclair
77 Frank Vatrano // 19 Joe Thornton // 74 Owen Tippett
94 Ryan Lomberg // 27 Eetu Luostarinen // 70 Patric Hornqvist
52 MacKenzie Weegar // 5 Aaron Ekblad
42 Gus Forsling // 7 Radko Gudas
4 Olli Juolevi // 62 Brandon Montour
72 Sergei Bobrovsky
35 Jonas Johansson
Scratched: Lucas Carlsson
Injured: Noel Acciari (LTIR), Markus Nutivaara (LTIR)
Taxi Squad: Matt Kiersted, Chase Priskie, Aleksi Heponiemi
Covid Protocol: Mason Marchment, Sam Reinhart, Spencer Knight
Suspended: Sam Bennett (Game 2 of 3)
PROJECTED DALLAS STARS LINEUP
21 Jason Robertson // 24 Roope Hintz // 16 Joe Pavelski
34 Denis Gurianov // 14 Jamie Benn // 91 Tyler Seguin
25 Joel Kiviranta // 40 Jacob Peterson // 47 Alexander Radulov
18 Michael Raffl // 12 Radek Faksa // 11 Luke Glendenning
23 Esa Lindell // 3 John Klingberg
20 Ryan Suter // 4 Miro Heiskanen
5 Andrej Sekera // 2 Jani Hakanpaa
29 Jake Oettinger
70 Braden Holtby