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Category: Nashville-Predators

Predators Win Some Respect

From Stu Hackel at the Red Light at SI.com:

Yes, it has taken the Predators 13 seasons and five trips to the playoffs to win a round. But what they won on Sunday was more than a fourth game over the Ducks. They’ve finally won some respect and heightened relevance in the hockey community.

The Preds have for too long been an afterthought among fans and the media. That’s not surprising considering their southern location in a culture that still looks oddly at where a team plays its home games. And in this case, Nashville’s identity remains so wrapped up with the Grand Ole Opry, cowboy hats and big hairstyles that fans have had lots of material for derisive jokes. But the days of a half-filled home arena are gone. Jim Balsillie and Boots Del Biaggio are a distant memory. The Predators play in front of a packed house with a knowledgeable and enthusiastic fan base.

Still, as long as playoff success eluded the Preds, the hockey world could afford to ignore them regardless of how well they did during the regular season.

The fact is, they’ve done well.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Nashville Predators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Predators Continue To Make History

from David Climer of The Tennessean,

OK, OK. I realize that right now they’re rolling their eyes about all this in Montreal, Toronto, Detroit and those other NHL cities that own multiple Stanley Cups.

To them, the thought of celebrating a first-round playoff victory is a punch line.

Note to all you hockey snobs: Stick it. Or high-stick it, if you will.

continued

OK, OK, David Climer, I gave you a pass yesterday when you mentioned Stanley Cup and Toronto in the same sentence, but today, you must stop.  Do you realize when the Leafs last won the Cup, there were six teams in the league.  Please, if/when you write about hockey, do some research and no, I am not a hockey snob.  But understand, more hockey people than ever will be reading your columns, so be prepared.

One more thing, Montreal does celebrate a first round victory, all you have to do is follow the game to know that.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Nashville Predators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Will The Predators Win A Clinching Game?

from David Climer of The Tennessean,

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before, but this is The Biggest Game In Predators History. It comes on the heels of The Biggest Game In Predators History on Friday night, which was preceded two nights earlier by The Biggest Game In Predators History.

This is uncharted territory for the Preds. They’ve never before had an opportunity to clinch a playoff series. It’s the first time they’ve won two road games in a series. And even at worst, they are assured of playing in a Game 7 for the first time.

Sure, franchises such as the Canadiens, Maple Leafs and Red Wings look down their noses at such things. When you’ve won multiple Stanley Cups, there is little sense of accomplishment by merely making it out of the first round.

But it’s different here. This is an expansion team in a nontraditional hockey market that is making its own history, one shift at a time. After five previous one-and-done playoff appearances, reaching Round 2 is a significant step.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, Nashville Predators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Ducks Need To Win Two In A Row

from Jeff Miller of the OC Register,

“All series, we’ve been giving it back to them,” Ducks forward Bobby Ryan said. “I think when we get into a lead situation late we accept waves too much. All third period long (Friday) we sat across the blue line and watched them come in waves.”

The result: The Ducks swallowed gallons of salty surf.

Let’s face it. Consecutive victories now will be an uphill, against-the-wind pursuit. It probably would be easier for the Ducks to consume chicken soup with chopsticks while wearing their hockey gloves. And their mouthpieces.

First, they have to recover from the last game, recover like an athlete would from an injury. Because losing in the postseason by permitting one goal with 35 seconds left in regulation and a second 1:57 into overtime can be as injurious as an industrial accidental.

Ryan called the startling upset “heartbreaking.” Ryan Getzlaf, in discussing the 4-3 defeat, used the word “killed” and Selanne said something about “feeling terrible.”

The Ducks surrendered two third-period leads and lost Game 5 in overtime to a franchise that had never won a Game 5 or a playoff game in overtime. And, again, they did all that at home, with the encouragement of 17,000 at their backs.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, Nashville Predators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Typical Predator Scores Not So Typical Goal

from Josh Cooper of Predators Insider at the Tennessean,

I guess we can now say it. That was the biggest win in Predators history — at least to this point. A victory Sunday would trump this 4-3 overtime win — simply because it would send the Predators franchise into unchartered territory — the second round of the playoffs. Of all the people to score Nashville’s first overtime playoff goal, Jerred Smithson is the least likely. But he’s also the best choice. Nashville Coach Barry Trotz likes to use the term “Predator” in regards to his more blue-collar players. Smithson embodies this description. He has been with the team since they signed him in 2004. At age 32 he has found a niche as a checking center, who can also play the wing. He hits, he skates he wins face-offs, he doesn’t score that much. Basically, he’s a Predator. And now, he’s given Nashville a 3-2 series lead.

more on the Preds…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Nashville Predators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Video- Bobby Ryan With The Goal Of The Playoffs?

Do remember, he does beat a forward, David Legwand, but still…

added 1:05am, 2nd video below is the Anaheim feed, the first video is from the TSN feed.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, Nashville Predators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: bobby+ryan

Did The Predators Blow Their Chance To Move On?

from David Climer of The Tennesean,

On what was perhaps the biggest stage hockey has ever assumed on the Nashville sports landscape, the Predators blew it, surrendering three third-period goals in the span of 5½ minutes in a 6-3 loss to the Ducks.

That sends the series back to Anaheim tied 2-2. Game 5 is on Friday at 9 p.m. CDT.

Game 4 was a lost opportunity of major proportions for the Preds. They arrived at faceoff leading the series 2-1. They were playing at home. And the Ducks were minus Bobby Ryan, one of their key offensive operatives who sat out the last game of a two-game suspension.

Preds Coach Barry Trotz has spoken repeatedly about the resilience of his team. Well, that resilience is going to be tested once again. The third-period collapse, which began with Nashville surrendering a short-handed goal, is the kind of thing that can turn around a series.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, Nashville Predators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Ducks GM Accuses Predators Of Diving

from Eric Stephens of Ducks Blog at the OC Register,

“It’s become a tactic,” he told the Register, speaking at the team’s hotel. ”I’ve watched enough. First things first. We have to have less passengers. We have too many passengers right now. But when you’re playing a game and [there’s] a constant stream to the penalty box because these guys are diving left and right … we have to start diving.

“I’d never thought I’d say this to my hockey team. We’ve got to start diving because it’s working. It is working. They’re getting power plays because of the diving. I can go through the list of players. You already know who they are. You’ve seen them. It’s ridiculous.”

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, Nashville Predators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Fisher a Valuable Acquisition in Nashville

From Kevin Allen at USA Today:

But a case can be made that no midseason NHL trade acquisition has been more important for a team than the Nashville Predators’ pickup of Mike Fisher.

“Since game two of the season when Matthew Lombardi went down with a concussion, we had a huge hole in our lineup,” Nashville general manager David Poile said. “Our guys battled and found a way to get through it, but Mike Fisher is a piece of the puzzle that was a perfect.”

The Predators acquired Fisher with the idea that his two-way style fit well into coach Barry Trotz’s defensive gameplan, But three games into the Stanley Cup playoffs, he’s their leading scorer with five points. He’s tied for the league lead in that department, and he has been a true flag carrier, even to the point of fighting Anaheim Ducks captain Ryan Getzlaf in Sunday’s game.

“There is not a chance that we would have made the playoffs without him,” Poile said.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Nashville Predators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: mike+fisher

Predators Can Now Handle Adversity

from David Climer of The Tennessean,

So here were the Predators on Sunday, completely dominating Anaheim deep in the second period. Nashville led 2-0 but it felt more like 12-0. At one point, the Predators had outshot the Ducks 25-5.

“It felt great,” center Mike Fisher said. “We didn’t really give them anything for at least the first half of the game. We were really solid.”

Then Anaheim’s Teemu Selanne scored twice in the span of 30 seconds to tie the game.

Uh-oh. Given the history of the Predators franchise, doubt began to creep into Bridgestone Arena.

“That could’ve been a real dagger if we let it slip away,” Predators captain Shea Weber said.

Not to worry. The Predators eventually finished off Anaheim 4-3 thanks to Fisher’s goal with 9:39 remaining to take a 2-1 lead in their first-round playoff series

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, Nashville Predators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com

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