Statistically Speaking: Preds will be playing for the Cup

Laura Christensen
June 5, 2017

Anaheim Ducks left wing Nick Ritchie (37) is checked against the boards by Nashville Predators left wing Colin Wilson (33) during the first period in Game 6 of the Western Conference final in the NHL hockey Stanley Cup playoffs Monday, May 22, 2017, in Nashville, Tenn.

Nashville goalie Pekka Rinne outplayed the Ducks' netminders yet again while he eliminated Anaheim from the playoffs for the third time in seven years.

The Predators, who've never won even a division title in their 19-year history, came in with the fewest points of any team in these playoffs. And we let them back in the game in the third. They lost their top centre, Ryan Johansen, after Game 4 because of emergency surgery on his left thigh, and captain Mike Fisher has missed two games with an upper-body injury.

As the clock ticked down, fans began shouting, "We want the Cup".

With that win, Laviolette became the fourth coach in National Hockey League history to reach the Stanley Cup Final with three different teams (Carolina, Philadelphia, Nashville), joining Dick Irvin (Chicago, Toronto, Montreal), Scotty Bowman (St. Louis, Montreal, Detroit) and Mike Keenan (Philadelphia, Chicago, New York Rangers).

Laviolette joked that probably means he's been fired a lot.

"McCarthy is a big component of that and Phil Housley is doing a good job on the back end, figuring out which guys line up better against certain opponents", Whitney said. I think of our fans who have been so supportive for so many years, especially the last couple of years in the playoff runs that we've had, and the energy that they bring into the building. "And when that time comes, we'll be ready".

The Predators will play the victor of Thursday's Game 7 between the Pittsburgh Penguins and Ottawa Senators.

They did it! After almost 20 years as a franchise, the Nashville Predators have fought their way into the Stanley Cup Finals for the first time ever.

Here are three things we learned from Nashville's win in the Western Conference Final.

"Our effort was there and we were a desperate hockey club right from the opening faceoff, and we didn't quit until they scored the second empty-net goal", Anaheim coach Randy Carlyle said.

Ondrej Kase scored his second career goal - both in this series - and Chris Wagner banked a puck off Rinne's head for a goal at five minutes even of the third to keep the Ducks close.

Sissons' second goal three minutes into the third period was deflating for the Ducks as they were outshooting Nashville 31-9. Notable among them is Colton Sissons, who notched a hat trick in Game 6 against the Ducks and has five goals on 14 shots this spring. We've been through some challenges together, and we stuck together no matter what.

Coach Peter Laviolette picked the 6-foot-1, 200-pound Sissons to center Filip Forsberg and Pontus Aberg because he wanted someone who could match up physically with Anaheim's Ryan Getzlaf. Plus they had the outstanding play of Pekka Rinna, who made 38 saves, and a hat trick from Colton Sissons.

Obituary: Bill White, a former Chicago Blackhawks all-star defenseman and a member of Canada's 1972 Summit Series team, has died. More importantly, the Predators had a 4-3 lead with six minutes to play. At even strength, the Ducks had 61 shot attempts, compared to 32 for Nashville, according to

Other reports by TheDigitalNewspaper

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