In Game One, the Nashville Predators were able to get the overtime victory 3-2 over the Anaheim Ducks at the Honda Center. This is the third time this post-season that the Predators have opened the series with a win on the road. The Predators were able to have a strong game in Game One as Nashville jumped out early dominating the first period in shots with 15 and taking the physicality to Anaheim. With a win in Game One, the Predators were able to steal home ice advantage and have a possibility to go up 2-0 in the series with a win tonight. Game Two will have many interesting storylines and the Predators can expect the Ducks to come out ready to avenge their overtime loss in Game One.
Going into Game One, the advantage that Anaheim had on Nashville was via faceoffs. The Ducks were exceptional winning 56.3% of the faceoffs in Game One which allowed for chances including Hampus Lindholm’s game-tying goal in the third period. The Predators must be better at faceoffs in Game Two. Winning 44% of the draws is not an acceptable percentage for this team. Granted, the Ducks are excellent inside of the circle, but they have to be better. They don’t have to be dominant, just better.
During the first and second rounds of the NHL Stanley Cup playoffs, the Preds had their way on powerplays and their penalty kill was exceptional not allowing zone time for Chicago and St. Louis. Nashville was able to kill off all four of Anaheim’s powerplay opportunities. This is five straight games where Nashville hasn’t allowed a powerplay goal by the opponent. On the other hand, the Predators had five opportunities with a man-advantage, and they were unable to capitalize. In Game Two, Nashville has to take control on the powerplay. Anaheim is notorious for giving up penalties, and the Preds must take advantage.
The Nashville Predators will look to go up 2-0 in the series with a win against the Ducks at the Honda Center. Game two of the Western Conference Finals will be covered on NBCSN or you can listen live on 102.5 The Game. Puck drops at 6:30 pm!