NHL Hockey Betting: St. Louis Blues at San Jose Sharks

NHL Hockey Betting:  St. Louis Blues at San Jose Sharks&h=235&w=320&zc=1

The St. Louis Blues’ performance during the current Stanley Cup playoff runs has sure been strange. They’ve looked downright inept and disinterested at times but at other times have looked like legit championship contenders. Now they’ll battle to avoid elimination as they take on the Sharks in San Jose in Game 6. San Jose leads 3-2 by virtue of a 6-3 thrashing in St. Louis. It was one of the bizarre ‘bored, disinterested and unfocused’ performances that St. Louis has made an art form during this playoff run. San Jose has been just the opposite bringing the intensity and work ethic that the Blues lack on some nights.

Here’s the strange thing about St. Louis’ playoff run. They’ll play like last night where it looked like they wanted to be anywhere else but playing hockey. That’s something that shouldn’t be a problem during the Stanley Cup playoffs and particularly for a team that is two wins away from the finals. Yet look who they’ve beat–they eliminated the defending champion Chicago Blackhawks in 7 games. Then they eliminated the Western Conference regular season champion Dallas Stars in 7 games. That sure doesn’t seem like the resume of a ‘disinterested’ team.

Jake Allen is out after his shabby performance last time out and Brian Elliott is back in. Elliott has come up strong several times after bad outings and that’s likely what head coach Ken Hitchcock is banking on here. As a team the Blues have been pretty good at bouncing back after a poor showing. St. Louis is 15-8 +5.2 units after a loss by two or more. They’re also 14-9 +3.3 units after allowing 4 or more goals. They’re definitely the value side here. They’ve got plenty of talent. They likely have enough talent to win a Stanley Cup Champion. They need some energy, intensity and focus. The frequent poor mental state of this team doesn’t exactly reflect well on head coach Ken Hitchcock or captain David Backes. They may both be headed out of town if St. Louis doesn’t win the Stanley Cup this year. They’ll likely make it to a Game Seven once again. They’ve already won twice down in a playoff series this year and for some reason they play best when they’re up against it.


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