Two Western Conference foes with not a whole lot of love for one another will clash in a big way as the Edmonton Oilers travel south to do battle with the San Jose Sharks in the final NHL matchup this Friday night. Let’s take an exclusive look at our NHL odds series where our Oilers-Sharks prediction and pick will be unveiled for all to see.
After disposing of the Anaheim Ducks by a score of 6-2 on Wednesday in impressive fashion, the Oilers will seek to use their newfound momentum to do the same against another scuffling western conference team in the Sharks. While Edmonton hasn’t been as lethal as they have been from the team a year ago that reached the conference finals, this is still a high-flying offense that will make the opposition pay if they make mistakes.
As for the Sharks, San Jose comes into this one losers in six of their previous eight games combined, the only way to go is up for a team that is still trying to find their identity at the halfway point of the season. After getting bested by a singular goal against the Kings 4-3, San Jose will attempt to reverse their losing fortunes to kick off the weekend this evening.
Here are the Oilers-Sharks NHL odds, courtesy of FanDuel
NHL Odds: Oilers-Sharks Odds
Edmonton Oilers: -1.5 (+142)
San Jose Sharks: +1.5 (-176)
Over: 7 (+104)
Under: 7 (-128)
How To Watch Oilers vs. Sharks
Time: 10:30 ET/7:30 PT
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Why The Oilers Could Cover The Spread
Everyone throughout the league is well aware of the Oilers’ offensive prowess, and while this will be a main ingredient for Edmonton in cooking up a spread-covering victory, some defense will also be needed to take care of business.
On paper, the Oilers are averaging a whopping 3.56 goals per game which currently stands out as the fifth-most goals in the league. Of course, Edmonton has been fortunate enough to be led offensively by one of and if not the top skater that the NHL has to give in Connor McDavid. With a league-leading 35 goals scored next to his name to go along with 79 points on the season, there is few things that other teams can do to slow down McDavid and his scoring prowess. Alas, McDavid has tallied at least a point in five consecutive games and should not be expected to slow down anytime soon.
Other than the fact that McDavid will be wanting the Sharks’ players and coaches to pull their hair out, the Oilers can surely guarantee a cover if they are able to get off to an extremely hot start in the opening period of play. Without a doubt, San Jose has struggled in getting off to good starts as they were outshot by the Kings 22-8 during the opening frame and the Oilers should do everything in their power to attack the Sharks in the same way.
Why The Sharks Could Cover The Spread
Coming into this critical contest with the league’s worst home record which sits at 4-11-6, something has to change if San Jose is going to embark on a miraculous turnaround to get back into at least playoff consideration by the end of the year. While the Sharks may have dug themselves too deep of a hole, San Jose will need to rely on a multitude of things to have a chance at covering in this one.
Nevertheless, the one element of San Jose’s game that has been a success comes in the form of their otherworldly defenseman in Erik Karlsson. Other than McDavid for the Oilers, Karlsson may be the next best player overall on either side. In fact, what the steady San Jose defender has been able to accomplish from an offensive standpoint has been nothing short of outstanding. Thus far, Karlsson is third in the league with 43 assists and seventh overall with a total of 56 points. Clearly, Karlsson is the heartbeat that keeps this Shark’s offense afloat and a stellar performance like the ones he has had in the last couple games will be crucial for San Jose.
Last and certainly not least, it will prove to be important for the Sharks to continue to kill penalties successfully. Believe it or not, but the Sharks possess the second-best power-play killing percentage in the NHL at 84.8% and rarely let goals slip past them when down a man on the ice. Regardless, San Jose would certainly still like to avoid being shorthanded for a majority of this contest, especially against an offensive attack like the one that the Oilers have at their disposal.
Final Oilers-Sharks Prediction & Pick
Yes, anything can technically happen when two division rivals have bad blood for one another, but the fact of the matter is that Edmonton is the better squad here. Barring an epic meltdown, picking the Oilers should make a few extra bucks for many individuals tonight.
Final Oilers-Sharks Prediction & Pick: Oilers -1.5 (+142)