Things are definitely starting to get a tad dicey for the San Jose Sharks. If they don’t win the NHL betting affair on Tuesday night against the Detroit Red Wings, they’re going to end up being the second team in as many rounds of the playoffs this year to have to face a do or die Game 7 after taking a 3-0 series lead.
It’s just not feeling very good right now if you’re a Sharks fan. San Jose has blown back to back games, and in both cases, the argument could be made that it had its foot right on Detroit’s throat. The Red Wings were up 3-0 early in the first period of Game 4, but the pressure was put right back on them by the Sharks with three goals in as many periods. The end result though, was a late winner by Darren Helm at 18:33 of the final stanza that might have spurred one of the biggest comebacks in the history of the league. Even in Game 5 back at the Shark Tank, San Jose had to feel as though this series should have been over. The hosts led 3-1 early in the third period before allowing three goals in a matter of roughly half a period to get their lead in this series sliced to just one game. Antti Niemi has been nowhere to be found of late at some crucial, crucial junctures. We understand allowing four goals in Game 4, especially in Motown, especially after last year’s easy series triumph for the Sharks. However, in Game 5, he only faced 22 shots and ended up letting the same four get by him, including stopping just three of the six shots that he faced in the third period.
The Red Wings have to be beaming with confidence right now, and there is just no way that we can see their season coming to an abrupt close, at least thanks to a terribly played game at this point. If they are going to bow out in the sixth game of this NHL betting battle, the play of Jimmy Howard is probably going to be the reason. We know that there was little that Howard could do about losing in games in which he allowed just two goals in Games 1 and 2 of the Western Conference Quarterfinals, but the argument could also be made that he is awfully lucky to still be playing right now after allowing three goals in both Games 4 and 5 to boot. Fortunately, an offense that had the second best offensive production in the league this year in the regular season at 3.1 goals per game is showing its true colors. The Wings are averaging 3.4 goals per game in the playoffs and have reached at least four goals scored in five of their nine games to date.
San Jose Sharks vs. Detroit Red Wings Pick: Too much Detroit in this one. The Red Wings have been lethal at home for years, and they have only been beaten once in these playoffs at Joe Louis Arena. This is an awfully short price on the NHL odds for a team that has really developed a slew of confidence. It’ll be another close one, just as all of the games have been in this series, but when push comes to shove, the Red Wings -138 is the pick to make.
Andrew Ryan has been in the sportswriting biz since the late-90s, and he has worked side by side with some of the best and brightest in sports gambling. Always searching for the best trends in sports, Andrew uses his brilliant math mind to his advantage to beat the books.