Sharks-Canucks Game 1 Free Pick

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(The Spread) – How will Game 1 go down between the San Jose Sharks and the host Vancouver Canucks? Here is our free pick.

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Oddsmakers from online sports book SBGGLOBAL.com have made the Canucks a -170 favorite for Game 1 with the Sharks being a +150 underdog. The over-under is currently set at 5.5. Game time is slated for 8:05PM EST.

Neither San Jose or Vancouver had an easy time of it in its semifinal series with the Canucks winning in six game over Nashville and San Jose being taken to seven by Detroit. Whether the lengthy series' will carry over to Game 1 of this series remains to be seen.

The two goalies in the equation here have both had up and down rides during the postseason. Vancouver's Roberto Luongo sports a 2.25 goals-against average in the playoffs and has been solid lately, but during the first round series against Chicago he was benched for the better part of a game for inaffectiveness. On the other side, Sharks goalie Antti Niemi came up huge at times against the Red Wings but also had stretches where he gave up a couple quick goals to turn the tide of the game.

According to the latest trends, seven of 12 games in this series have gone over the total during the last three seasons.

NHL Playoff Free Pick: The shakiness of the two goalies here could be magnified in a Game 1 of the conference finals with the added pressure to be perfect. I think Luongo has the ability to be the best goalie in the NHL and Niemi was brilliant at times versus Detroit, but a new series means new challenges and it might take a game or two for the two to get settled back in. Factor in the offensive firepower both squads possess and I like the over 5.5 goals in this game.

SUNDAY NHL FREE PICK: SAN JOSE SHARKS/VANCOUVER CANUCKS OVER 5.5

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