Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#73 San Jose Sharks 6 vs.
#74 Winnipeg Jets -150
Friday, February 14, 2020 at 7:05pm EST
Bell MTS Centre, Winnipeg
Written by Chris Kubala

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A pair of teams from the Western Conference take the ice out in Western Canada in the province of Manitoba. The San Jose Sharks are on the road as they travel to face the Winnipeg Jets Friday night. San Jose comes in off a 6-2 home drubbing by the Flames Monday night in their previous contest. Winnipeg was stifled 4-1 at home by the Rangers Tuesday night in their previous contest. The teams have split the last 10 meetings but the Jets have taken both matchups this season. That includes a 5-1 home victory in the most recent meeting on November 27, 2019.

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San Jose Sharks Looking to Bounce Back

San Jose was clobbered at home by Calgary as they continue to sputter in an effort to get back in the playoff picture in the Western Conference. The Sharks entered Thursday night seventh in the Pacific Division, 12 points behind the Golden Knights for the final guaranteed playoff spot and 17 back of Vancouver for the division lead. In the Western Conference playoff picture, the Sharks trailed the Coyotes by 12 points for the second wild card spot. San Jose is averaging 2.59 goals per contest this season. The Sharks are struggling to keep the puck out of their own net as they give up an average of 3.32 goals per contest. San Jose is sputtering on the power play by converting 16.8 percent of their chances with the man advantage this season. The Sharks have been sharp when it comes to the penalty killing as they successfully get through 85.6 percent of their shorthanded situations this season.

Against Calgary, San Jose was unable to keep the puck out of their own net and it proved costly as they were blown out. The Sharks were outshot 15-10 in the opening period and trailed 3-1 after 20 minutes of play. San Jose was down 3-0 less than nine and a half minutes into the game before Erik Karlsson lit the lamp with his sixth of the year at 12:47 off assists from Barclay Goodnow and Marc-Edouard Vlasic. In the second period, San Jose was outshot 14-13 with both teams scoring once, leaving the Sharks down a pair after two periods. Brent Burns got the Sharks within a goal with his 12th of the year, on the power play, at 4:51 with the assists going to Timo Meier and Karlsson. That proved to be as close as the team would get as the Flames restored their two-goal lead later in the period. In the final period, San Jose held a 13-8 edge in shots but was outscored 2-0 to end up on the wrong end of a blowout. Aaron Dell made 31 saves for the Sharks, who were outshot 37-36, in the loss.

Winnipeg Jets Seek to Return to Win Column

Winnipeg had won three straight and four of their previous five but came up flat offensively against the Rangers. The Jets entered Thursday fourth in the Central Division, eight points behind Dallas for the final guaranteed playoff spot, and 10 points behind the Blues for the division lead. In the wild card picture, the Jets were one point behind the Flames for the second wild card spot. Winnipeg is inconsistent on the offensive end of the ice as they average 2.95 goals per contest. The Jets are an average team defensively as they are allowing 3.02 goals per game this season. Winnipeg is struggling on the power play as they convert 19.3 percent of their chances with the man advantage on the year. The Jets are dismal in penalty killing as they successfully navigate only 74.8 percent of their shorthanded situations this season.

Against the Rangers, the Jets never got things going offensively and it proved to be the difference in the contest. Winnipeg held a 13-11 edge in shots on goal in the opening period but trailed 1-0 after 20 minutes of play. The second period saw the Jets with a 12-10 shot advantage but again, they were outscored 1-0 to trail 2-0 after 40 minutes of play. In the final period, Winnipeg held a 19-11 shot edge but they were outscored 2-1 to end up on the wrong end of the scoreboard. The Jets gave up a pair of goals in the first 90 seconds of the third period to go down 4-0 and seal their fate. Nikolaj Ehlers broke up the shutout with his 20th of the year at 4:35 off assists from Sami Niku and Josh Morrissey. Winnipeg would draw no closer, however, and wound up with the loss. Connor Hellebuyck made 28 saves for the Jets, who owned a 44-32 edge in shots on goal, in the loss.

Best Bets for this Game

Full-Game Side Bet

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Winnipeg is still right in the thick of a crowded Western Conference wild card chase but they have to beat the teams that they are better than. That clearly is the case here as the Sharks have had all kinds of problems. Those issues start in net as San Jose has had difficulty keeping the puck out of their own net with no real solution to that problem. The Sharks were hammered on home ice by the Flames and they were handled with relative ease on home ice in their first two meetings with the Jets this season. Winnipeg should be able to take care of business here as they bounce back and dust the Sharks for the third time in as many meetings this season.

Prediction: Winnipeg Jets -150

Full-Game Total Pick

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San Jose comes into this game 10-14-3 on the road this season. In those games, the Sharks have been outscored by 29 goals (94-65) and outshot by 93 (867-774) this season as the visiting team. Clearly, losing Tomas Hertl and having Logan Couture on IR has drained some of the offensive weaponry from the Sharks. San Jose sees an average of 5.89 goals per game in their road contests. Winnipeg is 14-13-3 on home ice this season. The Jets have been outscored by five (87-82) despite a +47 shot differential (994-947) this season in those contests. That creates an average of 5.63 goals per game when Winnipeg is at home. With the Sharks struggling to score and the Jets not lighting the lamp a ton at home, this one is under the mark.

Prediction: Under 6.5

Half-Time Side Pick

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The Sharks have held the lead after one period on the road just four times in their 27 games this season. By comparison, San Jose has been tied after 20 minutes as the visiting team 13 times and trailed on 10 occasions this season. When your percentage of games led after one period is in the teens, there's not a lot of faith in you. Winnipeg has held the upper hand after one period at home eight times in 30 games this season. The Jets have been tied on 12 occasions and trailed in 10 of their games. While the numbers aren't pretty, the fact remains that the Jets have had more success holding a lead after 20 minutes. Give Winnipeg a slight advantage here.

Prediction: 1st Period Winnipeg Jets

Half-Time Total Bet

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San Jose has had issues scoring on the road all season long and the first period is no exception. The Sharks have a -7 goal differential (24-17) and a -64 shot differential (306-242) in the period this season. That creates an an average first period of 1.52 goals per game for the Sharks on the road this season. Winnipeg owns a -4 goal differential (24-20) and a -19 shot differential (324-305) at home in the first period this season. That gives the Jets an average first period total of 1.47 goals on home ice this season. As a result, this one ends up short of the total.

Prediction: 1st Period Under
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Written By Chris Kubala

Christopher Kubala has been crunching stats and following sports for over 30 years. His in-depth analysis and passion for sports have led him to writing books about sports, regularly being featured on sports talk radio and as the go-to person for any obscure trivia. Now he is writing for our team here at Winners @ Whiners. Chris keeps an eye on transactions and statistics like a hawk, especially when it comes to football, both the NFL and college. He is also very knowledgeable in the NHL, the NBA, college basketball and MLB. If you want consistency, then be sure and check out Chris’ content daily.