Anaheim Ducks (44-27-13) at San Jose Sharks (47-27-10)
|Date & Time||Monday April 16, 2018, 10:30 PM (EDT)|
The Line: San Jose Sharks -140 / Anaheim Ducks +138 --- Over/Under: 5
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The San Jose Sharks look to continue their recent surge and take a stranglehold on their first round series as they welcome the Anaheim Ducks to town on Monday night.
The Ducks face a huge uphill climb in their Pacific division opening round series with their rivals to the north as they dropped both games at home to kick things off and now head to the road for the next two in hopes of extending their season back to Anaheim for at least one more game. The Ducks came into the series as a slight favourite but the absence of Cam Fowler on the back end has certainly been felt and as such the Ducks need to regroup in a hurry as their physicality hasn’t transformed into success on the score board and head into San Jose with a 4-10 mark in their last 14 trips. Anaheim has had success recently as they were one of the league’s hottest teams heading into the playoffs but they have cooled off in a hurry and have dropped to 13-6 in their last 19 conference quarterfinal matchups.
The Sharks meanwhile have been as consistent as they come over the last few weeks as they are 8-2 in their last 10 games following a win and have destroyed Pacific division opponents this season with a 20-6 stretch and with two of their best efforts of the season coming in this series it looks like they are ready to go on a deep run in these playoffs. San Jose has a very deep roster and added some much needed fire power when they brought in Evander Kane from the Buffalo Sabres and with a 10-4 mark in their last 14 home games they are considered a favourite in this spot tonight. These two sides have played to the under in their last seven meetings in San Jose and in 43 of their last 72 meetings overall which makes us think that this one is bound to be low scoring as well.
The Ducks are 12-4 in their last 16 playing on one day’s rest and 5-2 in their last seven against the West while the Sharks are 11-5 in their last 16 overall and are 12-5 in their last 17 against the Western Conference. Anaheim needs to win but they are in trouble against a very good Sharks side who is excellent at home but I think the desperation factor from Anaheim will seep in too much and get them back in this series.