Los Angeles (1-2) at San Jose (2-1)
When: Wednesday, April 20th 2016
Where: SAP Center, San Jose, CA
Time: 10:35 ET | TV: USA Network
The Los Angeles Kings don’t have to repeat what they did two years ago against the San Jose Sharks when they came back from an 0-3 deficit to win the series and eventually the Stanley Cup. Tanner Pearson scored 3:47 into overtime in Game 2 to prevent the Sharks from taking a commanding series lead. The Kings opened the series with a pair of one-goal losses at home and have surrendered a goal on San Jose’s first shot of the game in each contest this series. Los Angeles has only led for 4 minutes, and 2 seconds the entire series, but can tie things up with another road victory. Los Angeles was superb on the penalty kill in Game 3, keeping San Jose, which ranked third on the power play during the regular season (22.5%), scoreless on five opportunities after allowing two goals on nine chances during the first two games. Defenseman Drew Doughty has yet to record a point in the series but continues to log an extraordinary amount of ice time, playing over 29 minutes in each of the first two games before seeing 35:01 of action Monday.
The Sharks outshot the Kings 23-11 after the first period but could not put L.A. away as San Jose continued to struggle at home, where they went 18-20-3 during the regular season. Joe Pavelski was kept off the scoresheet in Game 3 for the first time in the series and held to just one shot on goal. The captain had three goals and an assist in the first two games and was great against the Kings in the regular season with four goals and 10 points in the five contests. Joe Thornton’s goal on Monday was his 102nd career postseason point, breaking a tie with Scott Gomez and Hall-of-Famer Bernie Federko for 86th place on the all-time list. The Sharks, who have scored the first goal in each game, have lost three straight home playoff meetings with the Kings. Defenseman Paul Martin entered Tuesday leading all players this postseason with 13 blocked shots – one more than Doughty and Chicago’s Niklas Hjalmarsson.
I said it in the first game, and I’ll say it again. Stick with the road team this whole series and you’ll be on the plus side by the end of it. So far its 3-0. Let’s make it for tonight.
Pick: Kings +105