San Jose at Pittsburgh NHL Betting Lines
The Pittsburgh Penguins drew first blood in their 2016 Stanley Cup Final against the San Jose Sharks, balancing experience and young talent to claim a 3-2 Game 1 victory. The Penguins outshot San Jose 41-26 overall on Monday while overwhelming the Sharks with skill and speed, asserting the home dominance that we have so frequently seen from the Pens this year. Up next is a Game 2 meeting between these two teams on Wednesday night. Will the Pens record a second straight NHL betting win and move to within two victories of winning it all in the 2016 Stanley Cup Odds, or will the Sharks bite back in Game 2? Let’s take a look at what we can expect from the online sportsbetting lines this Wednesday.
San Jose Sharks at Pittsburgh Penguins NHL Betting Lines
When: Wednesday, June 1, at 8:00 p.m. ET
Where: CONSOL Energy Center, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
NHL Odds: TBA
Why Bet on the Sharks
Even without considering the Zig-Zag Theory and the fact that the Sharks are highly likely to come with into this game with more motivation for a series-tying win, we have seen enough of San Jose’s good road tilts to believe that they will be up to the task in this game. For starters, the Sharks posted the best road record in the NHL this year with 29 regular-season victories away from the Shark Tank. Moreover, the Sharks are 10-2 in their last 12 road games against teams with a home winning percentage greater than .600, including Monday’s Game 1 loss. Based on such records, and the fact that San Jose has fared pretty decently on the road in this year’s playoffs, there’s reason to hope that the Sharks can turn things around on Wednesday. Oh, and not forget, the Sharks are quite a physical side, including the likes of Joe Thornton (6’4″), Patrick Marleau (6’2″) and Tomas Hertl (6’2″), along with some other big bodies in Joel Ward and Joe Pavelski down low, and this size is likely to wear down Pittsburgh sooner rather than later.
Why Bet on the Penguins
When the Pens played the Sharks in the regular season, both teams split the series, with each one winning on the road. The Pens, however, showed on Monday that they were just as capable of winning at home. Most notable about the victory was the manner in which the team veterans—led by captain Sidney Crosby and star skater Evgeni Malkin—blended well with the young players in the team for an overall balanced performance, featuring plenty of speed and resilience. It’s hard to see the Pens skate with such a breathtaking speed and dominating the game once again against the Sharks (who are bound to be better-prepared), but if the Pens can repeat or better on Monday’s performance; the Sharks will be in for a rough night. Obviously, momentum will be on Pittsburgh’s side, and if the Pens can tap into that together with their superior talent, beating the rather inexperienced Sharks for the second straight time shouldn’t be a big deal this Wednesday.
Expert Stanley Cup Predictions and Picks
Sidney Crosby is arguably the best hockey player on the planet right now and the Penguins have shown that they mean business, so don’t expect them to slow down this Wednesday. But then again, the Sharks have won 14 of the last 20 overall encounters against Pittsburgh and that should count for something, even if both teams are playing different ice hockey than they did in the past. In addition, the Sharks have already neutralized some of the game’s most elite scorers in the playoffs en route to the Final, including Anze Kopitar, Ryan Johansen, Filip Forsberg, Vladimir Tarasenko and Jaden Schwartz. After facing the fierce crew of Crosby, Malkin, Kessel and Co. on Monday and losing by just one goal, I’d expect the Sharks to figure out a better performance on Wednesday. It won’t be easy, I agree, but the Sharks have proven to be more than capable. So for my pick, I will go with a narrow hard-earned San Jose win in a highly-likely high-scoring duel that will take the game total OVER.