The San Jose Sharks (1-2) will face a tough challenge Tuesday, visiting the Philadelphia Flyers (1-1) in their home opener with sportsbooks pegging this as a pick'em matchup.
The difficult part for the Sharks will be playing back-to-back days after getting blanked by the New York Islanders 4-0 on Monday. Meanwhile, the Flyers return to the Wells Fargo Center for the first time since last season following a 1-1 start on the road.
NHL betting pick, via OddsShark computer: 3.0-2.6, Sharks (NHL picks on every game)
Why the Sharks can pay on the NHL lines
San Jose may be playing without veteran center Joe Thornton, but what else is new? The 39-year-old played in just 47 games a year ago and is currently dealing with an infection to his surgically-repaired right knee. The Sharks were fine last season when he was out and nearly won the Pacific Division.
Further good news here is that San Jose has dominated Philadelphia over the years, winning seven of the past nine meetings along with 16 of 19 dating back to 2004, according to the OddsShark NHL Database.
Why the Flyers can pay on the NHL lines
Much like the Sharks, the Flyers also saw one of their key players go down early on, as winger James van Riemsdyk suffered a lower-body injury and is expected to miss five to six weeks. But like San Jose, Philadelphia was used to playing without him last season and will find other players to fill that void in the meantime.
The Flyers split two games away from home to start their season, looking very good in a 5-2 win over the Vegas Golden Knights last Thursday and bad in a 5-2 loss to the Colorado Avalanche on Saturday. If they play as they did at Vegas, they will have a great shot.
Smart betting pick
The two recent wins for Philadelphia in this series took place over the previous two years, including a 2-1 home victory on February 11, 2017. In other words, the long string of losses to the Sharks is not very relevant for the Flyers in this spot.
Philadelphia is a much different team and undervalued without Van Riemsdyk. San Jose is also just 4-7 in its last 11 games played in a back-to-back situation like this. Take the Flyers.
NHL betting trends
San Jose is 1-4 in its last five games.
The total has gone under in six of San Jose's last eight games when playing Philadelphia.
The total has gone under in four of Philadelphia's last five games when playing at home against San Jose.
All NHL odds and betting trends according to Bleacher Report’s official odds partner, OddsShark. Check out OddsShark on Twitter and Instagram or head to YouTube for more betting picks and analysis on this week's top games. You can also download the free odds tracker app.