Sharks vs Golden Knights NHL Odds, Pick, Prediction
Photo by David Becker/NHLI via Getty Images. Pictured: Reilly Smith.
- The Sharks and Golden Knights meet on Tuesday night in Las Vegas.
- Las Vegas is set as a heavy favorite in this NHL matchup, but is there value on the home team?
- Continue reading for a full breakdown of the matchup, including a betting prediction.
Sharks vs. Golden Knights Odds
|Golden Knights Odds||-250|
|Time||Tuesday | 10 p.m. ET|
|Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.|
You need only look at Vegas’ 13-3-0 record compared to San Jose’s 5-9-3 to see that this is a mismatch. However, the Sharks have at least won their last two games — so is there a reasonable chance they can defy the odds, or should Vegas still be backed, perhaps even on the puck line?
Another Sharks Season to Forget?
You never want to write off a team in November, but the Sharks have been a franchise stuck in the mud for years now, and so far this season doesn’t look any better.
The Sharks’ awkward period was perhaps inevitable. When the bottom fell out in 2019-20, they had too many veterans locked into big contracts to truly pivot to a rebuild. Those same contracts tied their hands from a cap perspective, making it hard for the Sharks to trade or sign their way back into contention. Even now, staring at a potential fourth season without a playoff berth, the Sharks are largely a veteran team. When you look at the age of their players, you’d think they were in the middle of their Stanley Cup contention window. Instead, they’re more likely to factor into the draft lottery.
Perhaps the situation isn’t quite as gloomy as I’m painting it, though. Erik Karlsson is having his best season since joining the Sharks, with 10 goals and 22 points in 17 contests. A big issue for him in recent years has been his health, but if he can avoid injury then this should be one of his best campaigns in what has already been an illustrious career.
San Jose’s forward core isn’t bad either. The Sharks averaged just 1.89 goals per game through their first nine contests — and that was even with Karlsson’s stunning play — but from Oct. 27 onward, they’ve turned a corner with 3.63 goals per game.
Timo Meier is one of the main players who has turned his season around. He registered just two assists in his first nine games but has scored seven goals and 12 points in eight contests since. Tomas Hertl, Logan Couture, and Alexander Barabanov have been on a roll too with 10, seven, and seven points respectively in their last eight games.
Unfortunately, the Sharks’ revival hasn’t extended to their goaltending. James Reimer is okay at best with his 4-5-2 record, 2.88 GAA and .908 save percentage in 11 games. He’s surrendered at least three goals in five of his last six contests, so he hasn’t been trending in the right direction, either. Still, he’s been far better than backup Kaapo Kahkonen, who is 1-4-1 with a 3.70 GAA and .878 save percentage in six contests.
Even if the Sharks have some good players that have finally heated up, this is still a team with serious problems.
Golden Times in Vegas
You don’t get to 13-3-0 without doing nearly everything right. First off, remember how the Sharks’ offense has been rolling lately, averaging 3.63 goals per game since Oct. 27? Well, that’s great, but Vegas has scored 4.13 goals per game over the same span.
Now 100% after recovering from neck surgery last season, Jack Eichel is leading the Golden Knights with nine goals and 19 points in 16 games. However, a big part of the Golden Knights’ strength is their depth. The Sharks have six players who have contributed at least three goals while Vegas has 10, and that’s despite the fact that San Jose has played in one extra game. Vegas also has nine players with at least 10 points compared to the Sharks’ four.
Eichel has only been held off the scoresheet five times so far this season, but even if the Sharks are able to contain him Tuesday, they’d still have to deal with the likes of Chandler Stephenson, Reilly Smith, William Karlsson, Jonathan Marchessault, Mark Stone, and Nicolas Roy, to say nothing of defensemen Alex Pietrangelo and Shea Theodore.
Phil Kessel is admittedly not the player he once was at the age of 35, but he’s contributed a respectable three goals and seven points in 16 games this season and he’s just a depth player for Vegas, averaging 12:51 of ice time.
So the Golden Knights clearly have the edge on the attack, but where they really set themselves apart from San Jose is in goal. That’s a little surprising with Robin Lehner (hip) not expected to play this season, but Logan Thompson has taken advantage of the opportunity he’s been given, posting an 8-2-0 record, 2.31 GAA and .925 save percentage in 10 games. Backup Adin Hill is off to a similarly strong start with a 5-1-0 record, 2.32 GAA and .920 save percentage in six contests.
Vegas has had some great teams over the franchise’s short life, but this group is playing like one of the most complete yet.
Sharks vs. Golden Knights Pick
These two teams met on Oct. 25 in San Jose, and the Golden Knights won that contest 4-2. Since then, the Sharks have played better, but the gap between these two squads is still significant.
Between this contest being in Vegas and the way the Golden Knights have performed this season, I can’t help but pick them. The difference between these two teams is just too substantial for me to want to roll the dice on the underdogs. I’m even willing to grab the Golden Knights on the puck line despite the 1.5-goal penalty that imposes on them.
Pick: Vegas Golden Knights Puck Line +105 (play down to -110)