The San Jose Sharks will take on the St. Louis Blues for the second time this month with the good guys taking home a huge 2-0 shut out win in the first contest. The Sharks were dominant in the game, out-shooting the Blues 36-16, with goals from Tomas Hertl and Mikkel Boedker.
The Sharks enter tonight sitting second place in the Pacific Division with a record of 44-23-9 and 97 points, whereas the Blues are currently fifth place in the Central Division with a record of 42-28-5 and 89 points.
San Jose is coming off a 4-3 shootout win last night against the basement dwelling Chicago Blackhawks in a game where offense was the key to victory and Evander Kane, as well as Hertl kept up their rapid scoring pace. The Sharks have now won eight straight games and have scored a total of 39 goals within that time.
St. Louis, on the other hand, is coming off a 2-1 win against the Columbus Blue Jackets Sunday night, extending their winning streak to five games. The Blues have now won seven out of their last eight games and have outscored their opponents by a score of 29-18 within that time.
How can the Sharks hold back the Blues’ offense?
An surprising face in Brayden Schenn, the former Philadelphia Flyer, is leading the Blues’ offensive charge. He ranks first on the team in both assists (38) and points (63). A more familiar face, Valdimir Tarasenko, leads with 29 goals. Tarasenko is no stranger to scoring against the Sharks: he has five goals and six assists against them in 15 career games. Schenn will be the one to watch — not only is he scoring like a madman, but he leads the team in penalty minutes with 56.
The Blues offense is red-hot as of late, scoring 17 goals within the last five games, so San Jose will have to lock down the defense if they want a solid chance to win this game.
How will San Jose fare on the back-to-back?
The Sharks are nearing the end of a month that has shown a lot of games in so little time. San Jose has already played 12 games this month and 10 games within the last 19 days. San Jose will be playing in today’s contest with very little rest as they are coming off a late game last night that went all the way to a shootout. The Sharks will need to control the early pace and jump out ahead in order to continue this winning streak.
Will Evander Kane and Tomas Hertl continue their tear?
Since Jumbo Joe Thornton went down with an injury a couple of months ago, it has seemed that different players have stepped up each game, which just shows the incredible depth the Sharks carry. Right now, Kane and Hertl have been two key players and they have really stood out on this current win streak. Since his acquisition at the February 27 trade deadline, Kane is leading the Sharks in goals (eight), shots on goal (63), hits (36), and penalty minutes (35). He also ranks second in points with 13. Kane (seven goals in last six games) and Hertl (six points in last six games) will hope to lead this team to victory today.
Bold Prediction: The Sharks come out firing from all cylinders and dominate the game and winning by a score of 4-1. Kane will record one goal and one assist and Logan Couture will chip in with three assists.
Drop your own predictions in the comment section below!