After six games, it comes down to this. "We really do. That's his game".
Eliminating the regular season's top team might have been a springboard to a title if Montreal didn't lose goaltender Carey Price to a knee injury in the opener of the conference final against the New York Rangers.
"I don't think there's any question that Fil's a big-game player", Predators coach Peter Laviolette said. Each winning twice in the opponents' barn. The Predators and Jets have alternated victories, neither team able to wrest control from the other.
That set up the series with Nashville, the only team in the National Hockey League with a better record. Wheeler and rookie Kyle Connor each added two assists, and Jets goalie Connor Hellebuyck, who improved to 4-0 coming off a loss this postseason, made 36 saves to outduel Rinne in the showdown between Vezina Trophy finalists. That led to some stick squeezing, which led to some defensive breakdowns, which led to a Jets goal, which led to disciplinary lapses, which led to more goals.
Power plays and penalty kills could have a key role tonight. I think everybody could have played a lot better, could've given more. The forecheck has been ferocious at times, tonight needs to be one of those times. Winnipeg's 23-23 SU as an away team this season. But Game 4, which was held in Winnipeg, went to the Predators. Rinne is the first goalie in Predators history to record a shutout in an elimination game.
There's little time for players to celebrate, though.
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The Jets, meanwhile, were not counting their chickens before they hatched prior to the game. Calle Jarnkrok also drew in for Nashville on the fourth line with Mike Fisher after sitting out the last three. At first only Myers knew it was in, but soon everyone wearing yellow knew they'd have to stage a comeback. The Preds must win to stay in the hunt for the Stanley Cup. The opener started things moving in the wrong direction on a awful error from the usually stout Rinne.
The way the six games have gone thus far it is very hard, if not impossible to choose what will happen in tonight's game.
It's close to game time, who's your choice?
The Jets were competitive all day, and the Predators bumbled - particularly in the neutral zone.
Pierre McGuire on tonight's Game 7: "Game 7s are an unbelievable spectacle".
The Nashville Predators know that very well.
The conference finals begin Friday night. He was also chased out of Game 1 and Game 5 as the Jets just seemed to have him figured out for a good chunk of this series.
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- OK... want some game seven stats? "(The second) goal was just good work by their line, but he had to finish it off. Let's be honest, none of us in this room can make that play. They finally broke through with 2:10 left in the period as Scheifele buried a pass from Wheeler to put the Jets back up by two goals.
There have been 170 game sevens all-time...
- Nice piece in The Athletic on Terry Crisp and his memories of game sevens.
SlapShot Radio's tenth anniversary season is on. It's not about run-and-gun with them.
Las Vegas has gone both 4-0 and 4-2 in their first two playoff series. "We are happy to allow our fan base to have a celebration". Patrick Brown's Farmer Insurance Agency in Mt. Juliet... Give Pat and his team a call at 615-288-2086.
Will he show up for Game 7?
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He has given her his support-especially when, according to a Washington Post report, she considered withdrawing her name. White House officials persuaded her not to step aside, and she arrived on Capitol Hill primed to defend her record.
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