San Jose Sharks (43-23-8) at Anaheim Ducks (30-36-9)
NHL Hockey: Friday, March 22, 2019 at 10pm (The Honda Center)
Line and Odds: -1.5–Over/Under: 184
NHL Picks and Parlays Anaheim Ducks vs. San Jose Sharks
San Jose Sharks
The Sharks have accomplished the first of many steps to capture the Stanley Cup…they clinched a playoff spot. There are one of only two teams thus far that have officially clinched a playoff spot in the Western Conference. The other team being none other than the Calgary Flames who the Sharks are trailing in the Pacific division. By clinching a playoff spot, the Sharks can ease their foot off the pedal as the season concludes. Unfortunately, it appears that recently they may have become too lax. The Sharks are on a 4-game losing streak right now including an ugly 3-7 loss to the Vegas Golden Knights. Despite the Sharks clinching a playoff spot, they will want to get back on track to regain their momentum before the postseason begins.
Momentum is very volatile, if the Sharks stumble into the playoffs they may encounter more trouble in the playoffs then they anticipated. Especially because as the playoffs are shaping up, it is appearing more and more likely that the Sharks will face the Vegas Golden Knights in the first round of the playoffs. Considering how the Golden Knights just recently dismantled the Sharks it would behoove the Sharks to do their best avoid a challenging playoff matchup with the Golden Knights. Thankfully for them tonight, the Sharks are facing a team in the Anaheim Ducks who will miss the playoffs and have the 2nd worse record in the Western Conference. If they regain their focus, the Sharks can use this game as a launching pad to return to their previous level of play.
This has been quite a season to forget for the Ducks. Their record is 30-36-9, they are 14th in the Western Conference and they will miss the playoffs for the first time in seven seasons. The Ducks will have a lot of questions this offseason as they attempt to find a way to make it back to the playoffs. Currently, the Ducks have much to improve on; they are 31st in goals/game, 25th in power play percentage, 19th in goals against, and 22nd in penalty kill percentage. On both sides of the puck, the Ducks leave a lot to be desired and will have to retool their roster in the offseason.
The Ducks are playing a significantly better team in the San Jose Sharks. Across the board, the Sharks are stronger in nearly area, particularly on the offensive end where they have a top 5 scoring offense. The only area where the Ducks have an advantage is in goals against and even then, the advantage they have is slim. In order to do the unexpected and win tonight, the Ducks are going to have to play stifling defense to slow down the Sharks high-powered offense. In three of their last five games the Sharks have only produced 2 goals so they may be especially motivated to score a lot of goals tonight. The Ducks definitely have the odds stacked against them, but we’ve seen crazier things happen in sports.
NHL Betting Trends:
San Jose Sharks
San Jose is 1-4 ATS in its last 5 games
San Jose is 15-8 SU in its last 23 games
San Jose is 1-4 SU in its last 5 games
Anaheim is 12-5 ATS in its last 17 games
Anaheim is 5-2 ATS in its last 7 games at home
Anaheim is 6-13 SU in its last 19 games at home
Free NHL Expert Picks San Jose Sharks vs. Anaheim Ducks
The Ducks are too over-matched and just do not have the personnel on their roster to counteract the talent that the Sharks have. However, two hidden advantages the Ducks have is that they’re playing at home and that due to their record the Sharks may view their game as an easy win. I do think that these advantages are not big enough for the Ducks considering the Sharks have playoff placement implications in every game they play, but they could at least make the game more interesting.
PICK: San Jose Sharks -1.5