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Lightning vs. Sharks NHL Odds, Preview, Prediction: San Jose Undervalued at Home (Jan. 22)

Lightning vs. Sharks NHL Odds, Preview, Prediction: San Jose Undervalued at Home (Jan. 22) article feature image

Jeff Halstead/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Alexander Barabanov and Brent Burns

  • Tampa Bay plays the backend of a back-to-back as it travels to San Jose.
  • The Sharks have underachieved this month, but at +175, they could offer some value to upset the Lightning.
  • Grant White breaks down the game and gives his top pick, below.

Lightning vs. Sharks Odds

Lightning Odds -205
Sharks Odds +175
Over/Under 6
Time 10:30 p.m. ET
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.

The Tampa Bay Lightning will play their second game in as many nights when they travel to take on the San Jose Sharks on Saturday.

The Bolts have been outplaying their metrics over their recent sample, but they have a few other factors working against them for their inter-conference matchup.

Conversely, the Sharks’ analytics say they are due for more wins than they’ve accumulated recently, suggesting an edge in backing the home team.

Lightning in a Funk

Tampa hasn’t put forward many strong performances recently. The Lightning have been outplayed in three of their past four, establishing a 48.3% expected goals-for rating over that span.

Their offense has been letting them down over that span, recording 23 or fewer scoring chances at five-on-five in three of four while getting outshot in the same number of games.

The Lightning did themselves no favors by starting primary goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy on Friday night. That leaves them with Brian Elliott and his 89.9% save percentage for their Saturday night encounter against the Sharks. Elliott’s recent performances don’t inspire much confidence as the veteran netminder is stopping just 86.7% over his past two starts.

There is an ongoing disconnect between the Lightning’s expected goals-for percentage and actual rating that is inflating their PDO. Across all strengths, the Bolts have put up a 1.059 PDO over their past five games, elevating their season-long PDO to 1.015.

Tampa is above-average, and their recent performances suggest that their PDO should continue to regress.

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Sharks Due Positive Regression

San Jose on the opposite end of the progression/regression spectrum. The Sharks solid underlying metrics over their past seven games, a span in which they’ve outplayed six of their previous seven opponents but won just four games.

The underlying metrics support that the Sharks have been the better team in recent matchups. Since January 6, the Sharks have posted a cumulative 54.8% expected goals-for rating at five-on-five, modestly dropping to 54.0% across all strengths.

Nevertheless, the Sharks have only four wins over that stretch while out-chancing their opponents in scoring chances in five of seven and high-danger chances in six of seven.

San Jose’s analytics success relates to their solid offensive showings. Logan Couture and company are averaging 32.1 scoring and 13.4 high-danger chances over their seven-game sample.

That has not yet translated to output, as the Sharks have below-average shooting percentages in six of their past seven games, scoring more than three goals in a game just once. The Sharks’ metrics support that a big game is on the horizon.

Lightning vs. Sharks Pick

San Jose is underachieving relative to its metrics, and is in an excellent spot to improve its outcomes against a Lightning team that is due for regression.

The betting market is severely underestimating the Sharks’ chances, and that’s creating an advantage for bettors. On that basis, we’re backing the Sharks on the moneyline at +175; however, we’re comfortable with them up to +150.

Pick: Sharks +175

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