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National Hockey League playoffs 2017: James Neal's goal gives Predators OT win over Ducks

17 Mai 2017

The Ducks are slight series favourites on Sports Interaction NHL odds.

Instead, the Preds started the series with back-to-back wins in Chicago and swept Patrick Kane, Jonathan Toews and the favored Blackhawks out of the playoffs. The Predators are 9-2 in the postseason, scoring 31 goals and allowing only 16, and have won Game 1 on the road in all three series.

- Talk of the production from the blue line - most notably Ryan Ellis, Roman Josi and P.K. Subban - has been constant since the first couple of games against the St. Louis Blues in the second round, and the trend continued versus the Ducks.

Overtime went for over 10 minutes before Neal scored his fourth goal of the playoffs to give Nashville the win.

Anaheim advances to the Western Conference final to play the Nashville Predators. The Ducks can look back at last season where the Predators - who largely have the same cast returning - forced them to win twice at Bridgestone Arena after taking the first two games.

Nick Ritchie is a National Hockey League playoff newcomer.

Predators defenseman Mattias Ekholm told the NHL's official website that the team likes the position it's in, but can't ease up either.

The victor will play for the ultimate prize, the Stanley Cup. They've had 23 skaters on the ice so far this post-season, and 15 of them have scored goals. Ryan Johansen, Forsberg and Viktor Arvidsson did combine for three points and eight shots, but Johansen racked up an assist on an extended shift with another line and Forsberg's goal came against Antoine Vermette's line. Rinne was 1-1-1 with a 2.63 GAA and.919 save percentage.

Weeks after he was hired, Rutherford acquired Patric Hornqvist from Nashville for James Neal at the 2014 draft. But Nashville had never had a No. 1 center, and Johansen was arguably the missing piece of a Cup contender. "I think Washington, for sure, is due to win".

"Today's player wants to know why you're doing something", said Carlyle, who won a Stanley Cup with the Ducks in 2007 but was sacked five years later.

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"The fact that they survived it and still won the game is a good sign".

It wasn't long before the Ducks were looking at a 2-0 deficit and the Predators were having their way. Mike Trout crossed Katella Avenue to support the Ducks for the second time in three playoff games.

Anaheim has just two days to prepare to face another daunting obstacle from its playoff past: a 6-foot-5 Finnish goalie with a knack for stopping the Ducks in their playoff tracks.

An injury sidelined Kevin Bieksa for all but Game 1 of the second round against Edmonton but the veteran has recovered to be an "option" to Carlyle. Eaves had 32 regular-season goals combined with Dallas and Anaheim. With that in mind, it'd be shocking if nerves even slightly bothered the Ducks, especially given the dragon the organization slayed with the winner-takes-all victory over the Edmonton Oilers. Averaged 19:20 in ice time. Rinne picked up right where he left off last season when Nashville eliminated Anaheim from the first round in seven games, but Gibson was similarly outstanding.

Anaheim Ducks center Andrew Cogliano, left, celebrates after scoring past Edmonton Oilers goalie Cam Talbot during the second period in Game 7 of a second-round NHL hockey Stanley Cup playoff series in Anaheim, Calif., Wednesd. Pekka Rinne recorded 22 saves. That loss got Coach Bruce Boudreau fired.

"One of the things Nashville does really well is keeping the defensemen wide on the rim for the cycle when they have good possession". Gibson was 1-1-0 with a 3.09 GAA and.894 save percentage.

Game 3 is Tuesday night in Nashville.

They discovered that being the team to score first in these games really wasn't worth much.

The Ducks are now second in the same category with 28 points.

Where the Predators hold the advantage is that they have had all week to prepare for a high-octane offense. I'm done picking against Nashville as it has the clear edge in goal here and is 2-0 all-time vs. the Ducks in the playoffs. Perry has six points in the last four games, capped by an assist on Ritchie's series-winning goal.