St. Louis Blues (0-1) at San Jose Sharks (1-0)
NHL Hockey: Monday May 13th 2019 at 9:05 PM EDT (SAP Center)
Lines and Odds: San Jose Sharks -137
FREE NHL PICKS San Jose Sharks vs St. Louis Blues
Welcome to Game 2 of the Western Conference Final between the St. Louis Blues and the San Jose Sharks. Game 1 is in the books and it was all Sharks, as they won 6-3. Both teams came out of the gate looking a little tired, but then San Jose struck first on a 2 on 1 goal from Logan Couture. From there, team teal started to skate hard, control the possession, and scoring chances. The Blues were very physical and only managed a few stretches of an attack. St. Louis chased the game all night and the turnovers, and penalties didn’t help them crawl back into the game. Now that the teams have a game to study on, you can expect to see some fixes in Game 2, especially on the Blues end. Monday’s goalies are Jordan Binnington vs Martin Jones.
The St. Louis Blues looked flat in Game 1 and they will look to come out with more energy in Game 2. The Blues have had a taxing postseason run and maybe that seven game series against the Dallas Stars left them still feeling it a little bit. Also, it usually takes a game to adjust to a new opponent and St. Louis knows that they can play better. 3 of the Sharks goals were off turnovers in their own end and the early 5 on 3 power play, helped the Sharks regain momentum, and eventually build a 5-2 lead. The physicality was great, but the Blues have to do more then that if they want to even this series up. Some of the best players on this Blues team come from the defense. Alex Pietrangelo and Vladimir Tarasenko need to play to their strengths and lead the rush. Also, if this team can catch more power play chances, that will help their cause. St. Louis still has a nice 5-2 record on the road in these playoffs, it’s time to show that.
The San Jose Sharks have won three straight Game 1s 5-2, 5-2, and 6-3. They haven’t lost two in a row in these playoffs since losing Game 2 and 3 against Vegas in Round 1. They have looked their best in starting a series and now it’s time to carry that momentum into Game 2. As good as the Sharks have played at home in these playoffs, they have failed to take complete control and get that 2-0 series lead. Now that this team is in the final four, they will try to get that big lead. The Sharks played well in Game 1. They capitalized on the power play, scored off the Blues mistakes, and didn’t let St. Louis get that many good looks. Logan Couture and Timo Meier had great games by each getting 2 goals and 1 assist. Meier has been getting back to elite forward form since the backend of the last series against the Avalanche. Still would like to see Evander Kane get going, but other than that, Sharks will try to play like Game 1 again and really make the Blues feel blue.
NHL Playoffs St. Louis Blues vs San Jose Sharks
So, who will win Game 2? The Blues will need to score the first goal in this game and come out with that desperate energy. The Sharks haven’t done this in awhile in these playoffs, but throughout the regular season, they had a problem at giving up a goal in the first five minutes of the period. Vegas did it to them plenty of times and maybe St. Louis can. The Blues need to protect the puck a little better and create more chances. For the Sharks, repeat the shark attack playing style of home ice. Control the score, tempo, and the chances. Don’t let the Blues hits slow the team down or cause a stupid penalty to happen. The Sharks could have been called a few times in Game 1, but the roughness was after the whistles. It should be a tight game and the Sharks finally get that 2-0 series lead with a 4-2 win.
Pick: San Jose Sharks -127