Philadelphia Flyers (8-12-3) at San Jose Sharks (11-10-4)
|Date & Time||Tuesday December 2, 2014, 10:00 PM (EST)|
The Line: San Jose Sharks -197 / Philadelphia Flyers +179 --- Over/Under: 5.5
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The Flyers look to end a three game slide when they take to the road to face off against the Sharks who look to make a push in the Western Conference standings.
The Philadelphia Flyers are an absolute mess at the moment as they are struggling to find any success without a healthy Claude Giroux and while the Philly captain is back on the ice he hardly looks 100 percent and as such the Flyers have dropped 8 of their last 10. Philadelphia has always been a solid team on home ice and this season they have done well enough at Wells Fargo but their play on the road has been putrid and easily their biggest downfall as they have but two victories outside of Philly compared to nine losses. Steve Mason has done a decent job between the pipes despite a lackluster win-loss record as having a sub-three GAA with this group is pretty respectable and while the Flyers do have the talent to be an Eastern Conference playoff team they just don't seem to have the same zip they had last year or even more so back in 2011-12. The Flyers will look to get back in the win column on Tuesday night against the Sharks.
The San Jose Sharks are on the hot seat at the moment as they haven't gotten off to the start many anticipated despite shelling the defending champs on opening night and their slow start has head coach Todd MacLellan on close watch. The Sharks still have most of their team from last year's collapse which before falling in four straight to the Kings in the opening round looked like they were going to sweep their way through the entire Cup playoffs so it is clear they are still a talented bunch. They did lose Dan Boyle on the back end but are a good team nonetheless that is just in a tailspin but perhaps a culture change behind the bench is the best way to go for this team as some speculate they won't find success with this group after the way things ended for them last year. Antii Niemi is expected to start and while his GAA is at 2.57 he is just 8-7-3 and hasn't really stolen any games. The Sharks are big favourites here based on Philly's atrocious road record but I think this game will be closer than people think as I see the Sharks escaping with a 3-2 victory.