Jets move within one win of first conference final
- Author: Leroy Wright May 08, 2018,
May 08, 2018, 15:34
The top-seeded Nashville Predators are down 2-1 in their series versus the Winnipeg Jets and will enter as the road underdog in tonight's game. Nashville's fiery defenceman is booed off the ice at the end of pregame warmups. "We've had a bit of everything in this series and I guess I'd just expect more of the same the rest of the way", Morrissey said.
Now the Jets, who just won their first playoff series in the first round, will have a chance to clinch a spot in their first Western Conference final Monday night in Game 6 back in Winnipeg. That's an incredible feat by the Jets but shows how big of a win last night was for the Nashville Predators. Subban was dominant throughout.
And that has been the case all series long. Coming off of a track meet Game 3 in which Winnipeg battled back from a 3-0 first period hole to earn a 7-4 victory, Nashville could be seen tightening up nearly immediately after Ryan Hartman's late first period goal Thursday night. Blake Wheeler also had three assists, and Nikolaj Ehlers added two.
The Jets held an optional skate and off-ice workout Friday at home, with only the scratches from Game 4 taking a twirl before they flew to Tennessee. "He was a beast out there". The Jets, meanwhile, aren't reading too much into Rinne being pulled in Game 1.
Mark Scheifele added two assists to become the first player since Sidney Crosby in 2010 to record five consecutive multi-point games in a post-season. The Winnipeg Jets are averaging 3.3 goals per game and are scoring on 23.4 percent of their power play opportunities.
The Predators' offense attempted 32.6 shots per game in the regular season, resulting in 3.3 goals per contest (ranked seventh overall in the NHL). Jets goalie Connor Hellebuyck had 27 saves in a hard-luck loss.
This one may come down to the scorecards after all, just as we all suspected - Wheeler included.
"Your goal when you go on the road is to steal a game", Hellebuyck said.
But Connor restored Winnipeg's lead 1:22 later when he popped a loose puck upstairs off a scramble in front after some good work from Scheifele. We're confident going in there that we can have success in their building. The Preds have their backs against the wall and will be going all out on offense to keep their season alive and they will have to as Pekka Rinne has a 3.23 GAA in the postseason so far.
"That's people making noise and that goes right through your body".
And now, instead of preparing for Game 4 on Thursday with a 2-1 series lead, the Predators trail by that same margin and are in danger of facing elimination when they return home for Game 5 on Saturday.
These two teams are very evenly matched, so I have no issues with going after the plus money here.
"Not for a second did we come into this thinking we would breeze through it", he said.
Four goals in 9:17. The Predators also must stay out of the penalty box. "If I don't, it is going to really cost us".
After the win, Jets coach Paul Maurice indicated that even when his team surrenders more shots than they generate, there's a confidence that Hellebuyck will be there to make the saves needed. Let's touch on a few things while the city of Winnipeg counts down to another Whiteout on a glorious spring day.
The only difference this time was that the Jets had a glorious opportunity to take a 3-1 stranglehold, but were unable to do so.
"If you have been in enough playoff games, you know there is nothing safe", Laviolette said.
"Every game you look at is a must-win".