Sharks due for a Win, Penguins Still Favorites to Win Series

October 23rd, 2019 NHL Hockey

The Pittsburg Penguins lead the Stanley Cup Final series 2-0, and while fans betting on hockey expect the San Jose Sharks to get back in the picture with a win in game 3 at the SAP Center on Saturday, SBG Global sportsbook still favors the Penguins to bring home the gold:

Sharks +425
Penguins -550

Each 2016 playoffs series has become increasingly more difficult for the Penguins. They beat the New York Rangers 4-1 in the first round, the Washington Capitals 4-2 in the second round, and the Tampa Bay Lightning 4-3 (the only occasion so far in this postseason in which Pittsburgh had to go to seven games). People betting on hockey would understandably feel that this bodes well for the Sharks’ chances, but closer inspection might make them think twice about that. As a matter of fact, the Stanley Cup Finals 2-0 lead is the best start of the 2016 playoffs for Pittsburgh.

The Penguins lost game 2 to New York, game 1 to Washington, and another game 1 to Tampa. The series versus San Jose is the first in which they have won the two first games in a row. On the other hand, this is also the first time that the Sharks are facing a 0-2 deficit in the 2016 Stanley Cup playoffs – however, it is the second series in a row in which they start on the losing end.

Past experience could also play a major role in the Penguins’ expected championship victory. This is the first time in 25 years of history that the Sharks make it to the NHL finals. Conversely, Pittsburgh is in the midst of its fifth trip to a Stanley Cup final series, having won three of the past four in 1991, 1992, and 2009. Interestingly, the Penguins won the championship in their very first appearance. But that was them and this is now, and the 2016 Penguins do not wield hockey as sticks as much as boomsticks. Pittsburg has outshot their foes in 11 consecutive games, as well as in 16 of 20 during the postseason.

The Stanley Cup finals have not been the exception; the Penguins outshot the Sharks 41 to 26 in game 1 and 30 to 22 in game 2. And yet, Pittsburgh is third in shots per game in the playoffs behind the Florida Panthers and the Chicago Blackhawks. The difference? The Penguins not only hit hard but also hit often. What does that mean? No idea. The point is they not only shoot; they score. Last year, the Blackhawks led the regular seasons in shots and won the Stanley Cup. This year, Pittsburgh led the league with 33.2 shots per game, so there’s that. If you don’t shoot you won’t score, and if you don’t gamble you don’t get paid. For the latter, SBG Global sportsbook is your spot for betting in hockey.

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