NHL Stanley Cup Finals Game Three: Pittsburgh Penguins at San Jose Sharks

2016 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs
Stanley Cup Finals – Game #3
#2 Pittsburgh Penguins at #3 San Jose Sharks
Penguins Lead Best of Seven Series 2-0
Saturday, June 4, 2016, 8:05 pm Eastern, TV: NBC Sports
SAP Center – San Jose, California
Opening Line: San Jose -145 / Pittsburgh +125
Current Line: San Jose -140 / Pittsburgh +120
Opening Total: over 5 1/2 -110 / under 5 1/2 -110
Current Total: under 5 1/2 -150 / over 5 1/2 +130

The Sharks trail the Penguins 2-0 in the Stanley Cup Final. Game Three is Saturday night in San Jose.
The Sharks trail the Penguins 2-0 in the Stanley Cup Final. Game Three is Saturday night in San Jose.

After two heartbreaking losses in the first two games of the Stanley Cup Finals, the San Jose Sharks look to get back into the series at home against the Pittsburgh Penguins in Game Three Saturday night. The Penguins can take a commanding 3-0 lead with a win. Teams up 2-0 in the Stanley Cup Final are 44-5 winning the Cup. However, Pittsburgh was down 2-0 in the 2009 Stanley Cup Final to the Detroit Red Wings and came back and won the Cup.

Pittsburgh won game one 3-2 on Nick Bonino’s game winner with just over two minutes left. The Penguins won game two 2-1 in overtime Wednesday night.

In game two, neither team scored in the first period. Phil Kessel gave the Penguins a 1-0 lead 8 minutes into the second. The Sharks tied it up with just over 4 minutes left in the third on a goal from Justin Braun. San Jose hit the post at least five times during the game. Conor Sheary scored the game winner just two and a half minutes into overtime. Pittsburgh had 30 shots to 22 for San Jose. It was the eleventh straight game Pittsburgh outshot their opponents. The Sharks were 0/1 on the power play and the Penguins were 0/2. San Jose goalie Martin Jones made 28/30 saves. Pittsburgh goalie Matt Murray made 21/22 saves.

Pittsburgh is coached by Mike Sullivan. The Penguins finished second in the Metropolitan Division with 104 points. Pittsburgh dominated the New York Rangers in 5 games in the first round. The Penguins outscored the Rangers 21-10 in the series. Pittsburgh upset the Washington Capitals in six games in the second round. Five of the six games were decided by one goal including 3 overtime games. The Penguins beat the Tampa Bay Lightning in seven games in the Eastern Conference Finals including 2-1 in the last game Thursday night.  Pittsburgh is 62-32-4-4 this season and the total is 45-39-18 this season.

San Jose is coached by Peter DeBoer. The Sharks finished third in the Pacific Division with 98 points. San Jose beat the Los Angeles Kings in five games in the first round, but the first four games were decided by one goal. The Sharks then beat the Nashville Predators in seven games in the second round. San Jose beat the St. Louis Blues in six games in the Western Conference Finals to advance to their first ever Stanley Cup Final. San Jose is 58-38-3-3 this season and the total is 50-41-12.

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Pittsburgh is outscoring teams 3.15-2.30 in the playoffs. The Penguins average 35.1 shots per game and opponents average 29.1 per game. Pittsburgh is 15/69 (21.7%) on the power play in the playoffs and 48/58 (82.8%) on the penalty kill. The Penguins have one short handed goal and has allowed one as well.

Pittsburgh goalie Marc-Andre Fleury missed the first two rounds with a concussion but started one game in the Conference finals. Rookie Matt Murray is 13-4 in the playoffs with a 2.13 goals against average. He has made 449 of 485 saves (.926) with one shutout. Fleury is 0-1 with a 3.03 GAA. He has made 28/32 saves (.875). Jeff Zatkoff is 1-1 with a 3.07 GAA. He has made 59/65 saves (.908). Zatkoff played in two games in the first round.

Phil Kessel has 19 points with ten goals. Center Sidney Crosby has 17 points in the playoffs including 11 assists.   Nick Bonino has 17 points with 13 assists.  Evgeni Malkin has 15 points with 11 assists. Carl Hagelin has 14 points with 9 assists. Kris Letang has 12 points with 10 assists.  Patric Hornqvist has 11 points with 7 goals in the playoffs. Six other players have at least 5 points in the playoffs. Left wing Scott Wilson and center Kevin Porter are both out indefinitely. Defenseman Trevor Daley is out with a broken ankle.

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San Jose is outscoring teams 3.30-2.30 in the playoffs. The Sharks lead the league in playoff scoring. San Jose averages 27.6 shots per game and opponents average 27.9 per game. The Sharks are 18/66 (27.3%) on the power play and 46/56 (82.1%) on the penalty kill. The Sharks have allowed two shorthanded goals in the playoffs.

Goalie Martin Jones is 12-8 in the playoffs for the Sharks. He has a GAA of 2.16 and a save percentage of .920 (506/550). He has three shutouts in the post-season. James Reimer is the back-up but has only played for 29 minutes in the playoffs.

Center Logan Couture leads all playoff scorers with 26 points including 18 assists. Joe Pavelski has 22 points with 13 goals.  Defenseman Brent Burns has 22 points with 16 assists.  Joe Thornton has 18 points with 15 assists. Patrick Marleau has 13 points with eight assists. Marc-Edouard Vlasic, Joel Ward, Tomas Hertl, and Joonas Donskoi all have at least 9 points in the playoffs. Justin Braun is probable after attending a funeral. Hertl is questionable for undisclosed reasons.

Pittsburgh is 4-0 in Stanley Cup Final games, 7-1 against Western Conference teams, 5-1 against Pacific Division teams, 22-6 against teams with winning records, 20-6 after scoring 2 goals or less, 13-4 in road games, 23-8 after the opponent scores 2 goals or less, 20-7 after allowing 2 goals or less, and after a win, 22-8 after the opponent allows two goals or less, 41-16 overall, and 11-5 in Saturday games. The under is 5-1 in this series recently. The Penguins have won 4 of the last 5 against the Sharks.

San Jose is 8-1 on two days rest, 7-1 at home, 4-1 in Saturday games, 12-4 after scoring 2 goals or less, 2-5 after allowing 2 goals or less, and 1-4 after the opponent allows two goals or less. The home team is 16-5 in this series recently. The Sharks are 11-1-1 at home against the Penguins.

San Jose needs to get their offense on track or this will be short series. Jones has been spectacular in the net but the Sharks are giving up way too many shots on goal. I think the Sharks get back in the series in front of a wild Shark Tank crowd.

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