Aleksander Barkov Will be Back for Panthers vs. Blue Jackets Saturday
The Florida Panthers will have their captain back in the lineup when they take on the Columbus Blue Jackets on Saturday night. Head Coach Joel Quenneville said Aleksander Barkov will be back on the ice for the Panthers after missing Florida’s past six games with a lower-body injury. Barkov is, of course, an integral part of the Panthers team and is one of the best two-way players in hockey. The 25-year-old Fin is also second on the team in points with 37 in 31 games and third in goals with 13 markers on the season. Florida’s center was hot before he went down with that lower-body injury with points in 11 of his past 13 games and four goals and five assists in his last five contests. Florida, who’s been rolling all year, didn’t really miss a beat without Barkov going 4-2 during his absence.
Quenneville also said Patric Hornqvist would suit up for Florida on Saturday. Hornqvist has missed the Panthers’ past four games, all of which they won with an undisclosed injury. The former Penguin, who came over in the offseason, is having a solid season for the Panthers. The 34-year-old Swede has 12 goals and 25 points in 33 games after just 32 points in 52 games with Pittsburgh last year.
The Panthers have been a big surprise this year and are tied for the most points in the NHL with 52 on the year while second in wins with 24 victories on the year. Deploy Barkov right away on your fantasy squad as he’s already picked up two goals in four games against the Jackets this season. Hornqvist should be immediately activated from your injured list, as well as the veteran has three goals in four games against Columbus this year. Both should be sneaky good plays over on FanDuel.
Over at the FanDuel Sportsbook, the Panthers are -166 on the moneyline and +164 to cover the -1.5 goals puck line on home ice. Taking a look at both Barkov and Hornqvist in the player props market isn’t a bad idea either for tonight’s game.