The first major championship for the City of Las Vegas in the four major American pro sports leagues is on the line Tuesday night as the Golden Knights can finish off the visiting Florida Panthers in Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Final and are solidly favored to do so on the NHL odds.
Panthers vs. Golden Knights, Game 5 | 2023 NHL Expert Analysis
How to Bet Florida at Vegas NHL Hockey Odds & TV Info
When: Tuesday, 8 PM ET
Where: T-Mobile Arena
Stream: TNT app
Opening NHL Lines: Knights -165, Panthers +145 (total 6)
Why Bet on Florida?
After falling behind 3-1 to the NHL-best Boston Bruins in Round 1, the Panthers now facing an identical 3-1 hole in the Stanley Cup Final after suffering a 3-2 loss to the Vegas Golden Knights in Game 4 on Saturday.
“Just go out there, win one game and force them to come back to Florida,” Panthers forward Matthew Tkachuk said when asked about road ahead. “That’s pretty much the message in this room. Same thing with Boston. That’s all we wanted to do. Boston had it packed up. … We just thought short-term and get it back to Florida then, and we’re going to do the same thing now.”
Florida could never get out of a 3-0 hole in Game 4 vs. Vegas. Defenseman Brandon Montour saw a pinball shot go in for the Panthers’ first goal, and he set up Aleksander Barkov in the third period, but the comeback fell short. Montour has three points over his last two games since he snapped a 10-game drought. When Montour was on the ice at 5-on-5 in Game 4, Florida led 2-1 in goals.
He’s just the third defenseman in the past 28 years to score goals in consecutive games in the Stanley Cup Final, joining Justin Braun (Sharks, 2016) and Brian Rafalski (Red Wings, 2008). The only blueliner to ever hit three straight games is Brian Leetch (Rangers, 1994). Montour has recorded three goals in three potential series elimination games in the 2023 playoffs and can tie Al Iafrate (four in 1993 with Washington) and Earl Seibert (four in 1938 with Chicago) for the most goals in potential series elimination-games by a defenseman in a single playoff year.
Barkov added an assist to his goal after going scoreless in the first three games. Barkov now has 16 points, 54 shots on net, 49 hits, 16 blocked shots and a plus-8 rating through 20 playoff contests.
Tkachuk is Florida’s best player by far but he was injured in Game 3 and clearly not right in Game 4. Limited to just four shifts in the third period, the superstar forward left the ice at 4:18 and stayed on the bench until 14:59. He’s questionable for Game 5. Tkachuk leads the team in goals (11), assists (13), points (24) and plus/minus (+12).
Tkachuk has recorded multi-points in two potential elimination games this season. The only active players with two or more points in three or more such contests in a single postseason are Patrick Kane (3 GP in 2014), Anze Kopitar (3 GP in 2014), Tomas Hertl (3 GP in 2019), Adam Fox (3 GP in 2022), Connor McDavid (3 GP in 2022) and Mika Zibanejad (3 GP in 2022). Fellow forward Anthony Duclair is also in question after a Game 4 injury. Duclair has registered four goals, 11 points and 37 shots on net in 19 games this postseason.
Sergei Bobrovsky has started all four games in net and there will be no change. The Golden Knights didn’t score over the last 28:52 of Game 4, but Bobrovsky had already given up three goals and the Panthers couldn’t recover. The Russian is 12-5 with a 2.50 GAA and a .924 save percentage through 18 playoff games overall.
Bet Panthers to Win Today
MyBookie Betting Lines for the Game
Why Bet on Vegas?
The Golden Knights can become the ninth team since the modern era (since 1943-44) to win their first ever potential Stanley Cup-clinching game. The others include the Oilers (1984), Flames (1989), Penguins (1991), Devils (1995), Avalanche (1996), Stars (1999), Lightning (2004) and Capitals (2018). Among those teams, the only to clinch at home were Edmonton, New Jersey and Tampa Bay.
Teams with a 3-1 lead in a best-of-7 Stanley Cup Final have gone on to win the series 97.3 percent of the time (36-1). The 1941-42 Toronto Maple Leafs were the lone team to overcome such a deficit in the Cup Final, when they climbed out of a 3-0 hole against the Detroit Red Wings.
Coach Bruce Cassidy believes the Golden Knights will finish the series Tuesday because they learned from their experience in the Western Conference Final against the Stars, when their 3-0 lead was cut to 3-2 with consecutive losses before they closed out the series with a 6-0 victory in Game 6 in Dallas.
“We know it’s a closeout game. I don’t have to tell the players that,” Cassidy said. “They know what’s at stake. They lived it with Dallas when they were able to extend the series and made it tougher on us. A little adversity is OK, especially when you get through it, and we did. We came out with a really good game in Game 6, so the whole process for us probably made us better.”
The Golden Knights can become the 23rd club to win the Stanley Cup since 1927 when the trophy first was competed for only by NHL teams and the 21st active franchise.
Jonathan Marchessault, Alex Pietrangelo and Alec Martinez enter Tuesday’s game with multiple series-clinching goals. The only active players with three or more such tallies are Artturi Lehkonen (4), Patrice Bergeron (4), Pat Maroon (3), Brayden Point (3), Bryan Rust (3), Patrick Kane (3), Joe Pavelski (3), Jonathan Toews (3), Paul Stastny (3) and Max Pacioretty (3).
The only players in Golden Knights franchise history with multiple goals in a potential series-clinching game are Marchessault (three in Game 6 of 2023 R2), Mattias Janmark (three in Game 7 of 2021 R1), William Karlsson (Game 6 in 2023 CF) and Chandler Stephenson (Game 5 in 2023 R1).
Vegas enters Game 5 with 11 different goal scorers against Florida. Only 11 teams have had more through the first five games of a Stanley Cup Final, with the most being 13. Vegas is also the first team since Boston in 2011 to have at least nine different players record a multi-point game in the Stanley Cup Final. Mark Stone and Jack Eichel are two of four Vegas players with more than one multi-point showing so far this round.
Vegas has received a multi-goal effort in each of its series-clinching wins so far this postseason: Stephenson scored twice in Game 5 of the First Round against Winnipeg (4-1 W), Marchessault had a hat trick in Game 6 of the Second Round in Edmonton and Karlsson tallied two goals in Game 6 of the Conference Finals in Dallas (6-0 W).
Bet Vegas to Win Today
MyBookie Betting Lines for the Game
- Panthers are 12-3 in their last 15 road games.
- Panthers are 12-4 in their last 16 overall.
- Golden Knights are 20-6 in their last 26 home games.
- Golden Knights are 6-2 in their last 8 games following a win.
- Home team is 12-2 in the last 14 meetings.
- Over is 6-1 in the last 7 meetings in Vegas.
Vegas 4, Florida 2
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