Many feel like the Los Angeles Kings have a good shot at hoisting another Stanley Cup this season. While that might be true, netminder Jonathan Quick will have to step up his game against the San Jose Sharks if they hope to escape the first round. The puck drops on this all-California matchup Thursday night at Staples Center.
- The Kings are 11-4 SU in their last 15 games at home.
- The Sharks are 7-2 SU in their last nine games versus teams with a winning record.
- The Sharks are 4-12 SU in their last 16 games in Los Angeles.
Online shop Bovada is presently offering the Kings at -145 in moneyline markets for Game 1 while the Sharks come in at +115. The total is tabbed at 5 goals with both OVER and UNDER currently priced at -115.
Quick was lit up by the Sharks this season. In three starts, the Kings’ puck stopper went 0-3 with a 4.40 goals against average and paltry .845 save percentage. Those numbers pale in comparison to his 2.22 GAA and .918 save percentage overall this season.
Joe Pavelski, in particular, was a thorn in L.A.’s side this season. Pavelski scored four goals and had six assists for 10 points in five games versus the Kings during the regular season. The assists and points were his highest against any other team and the goal total was tied with the four he posted versus the Columbus Blue Jackets.
Bizarrely, the underdog went 5-0 SU in five games during the regular season. Furthermore, the Sharks finished the regular season as a hot bet away from home. In their final eight road games, San Jose went 7-1 SU.
These two Pacific Division rivals have met in the postseason three times before. The Kings won in seven games after going down 3-0 in 2014 and seven games back in 2013. The Sharks eliminated the Kings in six games back in 2011.