NHL Odds, Preview, Expert Prediction: Sharks vs. Lightning (February 7)

NHL Odds, Preview, Expert Prediction: Sharks vs. Lightning (February 7) article feature image

Mark LoMoglio/NHLI via Getty Images. Pictured: Nikita Kucherov

  • The Tampa Bay Lightning host the San Jose Sharks in NHL action on Tuesday night.
  • With Tampa on the second half of a back-to-back, star goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy is likely to be on the bench, meaning there should be good value on the total.
  • Continue reading for a full breakdown of this matchup, including how to bet it.

Sharks vs. Lightning Odds

Sharks Odds+230
Lightning Odds-285
Time7 p.m. ET
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.

The Tampa Bay Lightning host the San Jose Sharks in a cross-country tilt on Tuesday night. These clubs typically compete in higher-scoring games, with six or more total goals scored in seven of the past nine matchups.

Here's a look at the odds, as well as our pick and predictions for the San Jose Sharks vs. Tampa Bay Lightning.

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San Jose Sharks

The Sharks have been involved in an abundance of high-scoring contests lately, with six or more total goals scored in 17 of their last 19 games. This trend is likely to continue with goaltender James Reimer projected to start between the pipes for San Jose.

It has been a forgettable campaign for the veteran netminder, who is 8-14-6 with a .895 save percentage (SV%) and 3.31 goals against average (GAA) through 28 starts. Reimer entered the break in particularly poor form, going 1-5-3 with a .876 SV% and 3.99 GAA over his last nine starts.

Based on his metrics, positive regression is unlikely for the Sharks' netminder. Among starting goaltenders, Reimer ranks last in goals saved above expected per 60 minutes (GSAx/60) at 5-on-5.

This poor play is likely to continue against Tampa Bay, a team he has struggled against over the last couple of seasons. Across his last six starts against the Bolts, Reimer is 1-4-1 with a .869 SV% and 3.66 GAA.

However, he could get some decent goal support as San Jose ranks in the top half of the league in expected goals for per 60 minutes (xGF/60) at 5-on-5.

Tampa Bay Lightning

On paper, the Tampa Bay Lightning should be a great Over team. At 5-on-5, the Bolts rank fifth in the league in xGF/60 but just 18th in expected goals against per 60 minutes (xGA/60).

However, the main concern when taking the Over in Lightning games is that they possess one of the best goaltenders in the world, Andrei Vasilevskiy. With that said, backup goaltender Brian Elliott gets the start in the crease in this contest because Tampa Bay is on the second half of a back-to-back and Vasilevskiy got the nod Monday night.

While Elliott has performed well in the backup role this season, he is still a large step down from Vasilevskiy. Through 12 starts this year, Elliott possesses a .903 SV% and 3.07 GAA.

There have been six or more total goals scored in 10 of those 12 outings, which is unsurprising given the Bolts' electric offense and below-average play at the blue line.

Sharks vs. Lightning Pick

Like Tampa Bay, the Sharks possess a disappointing defense. While they boast the front-runner in the Norris Trophy conversation with defenseman Erik Karlsson, that is because of his elite production in the offensive zone.

Defensively, Karlsson is terrible. Additionally, the Sharks just traded stay-at-home defenseman Jaycob Megna to the Seattle Kraken, which will only further hurt the blue line.

Taking the Over in Bolts games when Vasilevskiy does not play is typically a good recipe for success, and this contest is certainly another advantageous opportunity.

While I am playing this total at 6 at Barstool Sportsbook at the time of this writing, many other books are offering it at 6.5 and I would play that, too, if you don't want to lay the extra juice.

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