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The dust has finally settled on what’s been a crazy offseason for the NHL, along with the 2019-20 season around the horizon, sportsbooks are getting prepared for what’s shaping up to be another exciting year on the ice by releasing OVER/UNDER point totals for most 31 clubs at the approaching campaign.
BetOnline has tabbed the Tampa Bay Lightning (108.5), Toronto Maple Leafs (101.5), Boston Bruins (100.5), Vegas Golden Knights (100.5) and Colorado Avalanche (98.5) as the groups with the greatest opportunities to post the highest point totals. It is worth noting that the Bolts, Leafs and Bruins all reside in the tough Atlantic Division — a frightful sight for fans whose squads play at the Atlantic.
On the reverse side, the Ottawa Senators (68.5), Los Angeles Kings (73.5), Detroit Red Wings (75.5), Anaheim Ducks (79.5) and Buffalo Sabres (83.5) will be the likeliest teams to finish at the base of the standings. The Sens’ 64-point season in 2018-19 has been the worst in the league, but Ottawa didn’t have its own first-round pick due to a trade with Colorado for Matt Duchene in 2017.
A couple of teams I prefer to go OVER their projected point totals would be the Chicago Blackhawks (90.5) and Florida Panthers (96.5) The largest reason I like the OVER in both situations is goaltending. Chicago’s 84-point season in 2018-19 was underwhelming, but general manager Stan Bowman created a splash in free agency by registering netminder Robin Lehner.
With Lehner from the fold to help shoulder the load 34-year-old Corey Crawford, the Blackhawks are in a prime place to improve on their 36-34-12 album from a year ago. In the end, Lehner was a Vezina Trophy finalist thanks to some 25-13-5 record,??2.13 goals-against average and .930 save percentage in his lone season with the New York Islanders.
Florida boasted among the worst goaltending tandems in the league last year, but on account of the retirement of Roberto Luongo and the transaction of James Reimer into the Carolina Hurricanes, the Panthers will have a brand new look in net after signing celebrity goalie Sergei Bobrovsky into a seven-year, $70-million deal.
Having a franchise netminder in between the pipes, an offense that overlooks the ninth-most targets in 2018-19 (264) and also one of the greatest trainers in the NHL in Joel Quenneville in his very first year on the bench, I expect the Panthers for a playoff team and then soar over their 96.5-point projection.
All chances courtesy of??BetOnline as of August 13

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