Nashville Predators vs. Anaheim Ducks - 5/16/17 NHL Pick, Odds, and Prediction

The Nashville Predators returned to Bridgestone Arena Tuesday night to play Game Three of the Western Conference Finals against the Anaheim Ducks, taking advantage of the home ice edge to win by a final score of 2-1.

After Vatanen ended Anaheim's 0-for-20 slump on the power play, Silfverberg evened it in the opening minute of the second period, cashing in Rakell's pass for his ninth goal. The Predators hadn't allowed four goals in any game during their excellent Stanley Cup playoff run before Anaheim got five in front of its sellout crowd. Up 2-0, the Predators had all the momentum as they were in the driver's seat for a 2-0 series lead heading back to Nashville.

Nashville twice won Game 1 and went on to claim the previous two series with major help from Rinne, who usually has been at his inimitable best when facing the Ducks' scorers.

The now-familiar ominous hush fell over Honda Center, but the Ducks got going in an unlikely scenario.

"We believe that we can go in any building and play with the teams that we're up against and give ourselves a chance for success", Ducks coach Randy Carlyle said.

Filip Forsberg and Austin Watson scored in regulation for the Predators, who improved to 9-2 in this National Hockey League postseason.

But look closer at Gibson's larger body of work and you'll see a young netminder who has been very good and is now heating up to great. With about eight minutes left in the second the puck crossed the Nashville goal line however referees determined the net had been dislodged before that happened and the goal did not count.

"I didn't think we executed with the puck properly tonight, which caused us a lot [more] headaches than needed", he said.

Nashville dominated the tired Ducks, and Forsberg forced a turnover on a forecheck before tipping Matt Irwin's shot through Gibson for his fourth goal. "Like, his family and his friends watching him play, I don't know how you can cheer for a guy like that", Johansen said.

Gibson stopped 38 saves, while Nashville goalie Pekka Rinne made 19 saves.

Down one goal late in the third period, the Predators had four separate face-offs in the offensive zone, but came away empty-handed four straight times - two of which came directly off icings, but all four were lost by Ryan Johansen. Just two days after finishing off the Oilers in the second round, Anaheim struggled to keep up at times in its second conference finals appearance in three years. Two of his three goals in the playoffs have been game-winners. This round, that player is Johansen, who has already had his fill of the tenacious checker only two games into this 1-1 series. The Anaheim Ducks pulled off a rally to tie the series with a 5-3 win on Sunday.

Antoine Vermette #50 of the Anaheim Ducks celebrates his empty net goal with teammates Ryan Kesler #17 and Josh Manson #42 in the third period of Sunday's Game 2. I'm not going to say they didn't. Anaheim's power play was scoreless in 21 straight attempts dating to Game 2 of the second round against Edmonton, but Vatanen beat Rinne cleanly with a slap shot for his first goal of the postseason. Nashville has looked like the better team through a pair of games in Anaheim. Anaheim's Ryan Kesler and Nashville's Ryan Johansen chirped and exchanged slashes, as well as other forms of creative stick work.

Yet, they still gave up the first goal, took the first penalty, surrendered the first power-play goal, took the second penalty, allowed the second goal and, 16 minutes in, had just two shots on goal.

  • Julie Sanders