The St. Louis Blues bounced back against the sharks in the second game of the series. They will come back to home to St. Louis after splitting the first two games against the Sharks while putting up 3 goals in the first game and 4 in the second. The scoring was led by the Blues defense as Dunn and Bortuzzo both lit the lamp in the second period in the 4-2 victory on Monday.
St. Louis did a much better job in this game of limiting penalties, but a few bad turnovers led to the Sharks 2 quick goals. The mental mistakes are what could keep a team like the Blues from a chance at the Stanley Cup yet again, a team that has never won the cup in their franchise.
The San Jose Sharks continued their trend from the first two rounds by winning their first games then giving up the second at home. This is something any team wants to avoid, but it hasn’t brought an end to their season yet. The Sharks still have a lot to be confident about with all their star power. Couture and Karlsson have been getting the job done all playoffs long and will need to have a big impact if they want to regain control of the series back in St. Louis. Couture was able to score 2 more goals against the blues on Monday, adding to his points lead in the 2019 playoffs.
Blues rookie goaltender Binnington gave up just 2 goals on 26 shots in his last game against the Sharks. This was a nice rebound after the dreadful 6 goals he gave up in game one. Binnington has grown a reputation for not getting rattled in big games. That kind of composure is exactly what the Blues will need to keep this series going in the right direction. I would expect Binnington to keep up the good work coming back to St. Louis.
Sharks goalie Martin Jones has the least impressive stats of the final four goalies in the playoffs. With that being said, the sharks’ defensive stars do a good job of keeping things easy on Jones. Jones gave up 4 goals on 25 shots Monday in the 2nd game of the series. The 29-year-old veteran has a season save percentage of only .896 and a GAA of 2.94. The Sharks will look for Jones to get some redemption in St. Louis for games 3 and 4 of the series.
Although a split in the series over the first two games doesn’t give a clear-cut favorite in game 3, it seems that the Blues have been the better team and will now have a home-ice advantage. While the Sharks won big in game one, a lot of the Blues problems were brought on by themselves. The Blues tallied 7 penalties in game one and seemed to play more disciplined in game two with just 2. If the Blues can keep from beating themselves, they have a very good chance to win the next 2 games in St. Louis and take full control of the series.
My pick: Blues +195 and Over 5½ (-105)