The Wraparound is your daily look at the 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs. We’ll break down each day’s matchups with the all-important television and live streaming information included.
The San Jose Sharks have kicked off each series they’ve played in the 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs with a victory. In Game 1 of the first round against Vegas, they won 5-2. In Game 1 against Colorado, they were victorious by the same scoreline. In the first game of the Western Conference Final against St. Louis on Saturday night, they managed to win 6-3. As effective as they’ve been in Game 1s, Game 2s have been a different animal.
Even though they’ve played each Game 2 on home ice, they still haven’t found a way to go up 2-0 in a best-of-seven series this year. That will be the biggest challenge heading into tonight’s game (9 p.m. ET; NBCSN).
If they’ve made it to this point, it’s because they found a way to get the job done against Vegas and Colorado, but winning Game 2 probably would’ve prevented them from having to play seven games in each series. Going up 2-0 on St. Louis won’t guarantee them anything, but it would be a nice cushion to have heading into Games 3 and 4 which will be played away from home.
The Sharks have a 7-2 record on home ice this postseason which means their only two defeats have come in Game 2.
“It’s important,” Sharks coach Peter DeBoer said. “We’ve won Game 1 the last two series, and then both times, we’ve dropped Game 2. Hopefully, as you work your way through the playoffs, you learn from your mistakes.
“You know they’re going to be better and they’re going to be desperate. They’re not going to want to go in a 2-0 hole. We’ve got to handle that situation better than we have in the first two rounds.”
Getting the better of the Blues for the second consecutive game won’t be easy, as St. Louis goalie Jordan Binnington has a 3-2 record with a 1.97 goals-against-average and a .938 save percentage in games following a loss. Those numbers would indicate that the Blues can be beat twice in a row but that the game will be low-scoring if they lose again.
“We would like to go up 2-0,” Sharks captain Joe Pavelski said. “We know they’re going to be ready. They’re going to come out with a good push and their legs will be a little bit better. So it’s a lesson for us that we’ve got to invest early and stay with this.”