NHL Playoffs Hockey

The St. Louis Blues take on the San Jose Sharks in Game 1 in the Western Conference Final on Saturday, May 11. Check out odds, analysis, and a free pick below!

St. Louis Blues (+110) at San Jose Sharks (-135)
8 p.m. ET, NBC

St. Louis had to beat the Dallas Stars twice in a row to make it to the Western Conference Final. In Game 6, St. Louis outshot Dallas 25-23, including 11-7 in the third period. The Blues got to Dallas goalie Blaine Bishop with a late goal in the second period, then scored two more goals in the third.

Game 7 saw the Blues play a different style. St. Louis scored at the 13:30 mark, then Dallas evened it up at 15:55 in the first period. The Blues didn’t take any chances after that. Both teams played solid defense until St. Louis pulled away with an overtime goal.

In the wins over Dallas, the Blues showed they could be flexible. If the Sharks get out to an early lead, St. Louis can speed it up on offense. If San Jose wants to play a slow game, the Blues can do that too. Being flexible should help the Blues in Game 1.

The Sharks won every other game in the series against Colorado, with a victory in the first contest and a decisive win in Game 7. The trends don’t give San Jose much of an edge against St. Louis, though. The Blues are 7-1 in their last eight games as an underdog and 5-1 in their last six road games. The home team is 5-0 in the last 5 meetings, which is the only real trend that favors San Jose.

The Sharks play well at home, but it’s not enough of a reason to back them here. St. Louis is a solid play to take Game 1 on Saturday.

NHL Free Pick: St. Louis Blues +110


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