Panthers vs Oilers Stanley Cup Free Pick [Game 3]

Florida (2-0) at Edmonton (0-2)
When: Thursday, June 13th 2024
Where: Rogers Place,
Edmonton, Alberta

Time: 8:00 ET | TV: ESPN
Opening Odds: Edmonton -130/5.5

The Edmonton Oilers’ offense has let them down over the first two games on the Stanley Cup Finals and now their backs are up against the wall. The Oilers, down 2-0, will host Game 3 on Thursday night against the Florida Panthers. Teams that lead a best-of-seven Stanley Cup playoff series 2-0 have a series record of 352-56 (86%). Florida cruised to a 4-1 win on Monday to hold home ice and are +125 underdogs on Thursday night, while the Oilers are -135 with a total pegged at 5.5.

With Monday’s win, Florida improved to 4-0 straight up against the Oilers this season, but it’s Edmonton that is seeing 80% of the betting action for Game 3. The Oilers have managed just two combined goals in their last three games against Florida, leading the total to go Under in all of them. The Panthers are heavy -550 favorites to win the series after starting the Finals at -130. If you still think the Oilers can generate some offense and come back, you can get them at +400 to win the series after sitting at +100 before of Game 1.


Florida got a surprising two goals in Game 2 from Evan Rodrigues, as the Panthers scored four unanswered goals over the last two periods on Monday. Rodrigues scored the eventual game-winning goal early in the third period and added a power play goal later. Niko Mikkola and Aaron Ekblad also scored, while Anton Lundell had two assists. Sergei Bobrovsky made 18 saves and has stopped 50 of 51 shots faced through the first two games of the series.

The big question mark ahead of Game 3 is the status of captain Aleksander Barkov, whose 19 points (6G, 13A) ties him with Matthew Tkachuk (5G, 14A) for the team lead. Barkov left Game 2 midway through the third period after taking a high hit from Leon Draisaitl and did not return. He practiced with the team on Wednesday, which is a good sign for Florida. Barkov has been a key factor in shutting down Connor McDavid and Draisaitl.


Mattias Ekholm gave the Oilers an early 1-0 lead in Game 2, but that was all Edmonton could get past Bobrovsky. Stuart Skinner stopped 15 of 17 shots faced and the Oilers defense is playing well. Edmonton’s power play was stymied once again on Monday, going 0-for-4 on the night. The best power play in the league is now scoreless on seven opportunities in the Stanley Cup Final. McDavid and Draisaitl have been held to one assist between the two of them against Florida.

Defenseman Darnell Nurse left in the first period of Game 2 with an undisclosed injury after taking a hard hit from Rodrigues. Nurse eventually returned to the game, but he only played three shifts over the last two periods and there’s been no update on his status. While Nurse isn’t counted on for offense, he’s a key piece of the defensive core as he averages almost 20 minutes of ice time per game in the playoffs.

The atmosphere will be a lot different for the next two games and that’s a huge advantage for Edmonton. You can’t keep this offense down for long and I expect McDavid and Draisaitl to come alive. I can still see this being a long series.

Pick: Oilers -135