Published: Mon, June 05, 2017
Sport | By Wendy Sparks

Stanley Cup Final: Predators climb back into series with 5-1 romp


He's now 8-1 at home during the 2017 playoffs, and 4-0 in Game 3s. Defenseman P.K. Subban had guaranteed a win and the Predators delivered. "I mean, I was able to see the puck pretty good, make a couple big saves".

"This is the best building in the league", said Rex Ryan, who along with his brother donned Predators jerseys as they attended Game 3 Saturday night.

Game 4 is Monday night at Bridgestone Arena.

Neal then got in on the scoring himself, making it 3-1 in favor of Nashville with 23 seconds left in the middle frame. Mattias Ekholm added a second man-advantage marker 13:10 of the third period. Neither player generated a shot on goal on the power play - or at any other time in the game either. The first came on a power play, and it ignited the Predators and their fans and turned the momentum in Nashville's favor. The goal is Smith's first of the playoffs after he missed time with injury. Shot attempts are not a be-all and end-all, because they don't tell the story of goaltending or shot quality.

For fans at Bridgestone Arena, the excitement was palpable, with a celebrity-studded crowd cheering on the home team and loudly jeering the opponents with organized chants and a whole lot of catfish tossing. One power play goal and it's 2-0.

He followed up with a good glove save on Patric Hornqvist's backhand on the left side at 9:37 and another glove save on Carl Hagelin with 45.9 seconds left in the period. Murray robbed Neal on a 3-on-1 rush early in the period.

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The Predators scored on two of their three power play opportunities. That would be the lone goal for the Penguins on the night.

Two goals in 42 second have given the Predators a 2-1 lead on Pittsburgh in the second period of Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Final.

Josi scored his sixth goal off a slap shot at 5:51, tying it at 1-1 and finally giving nervous fans something to enjoy. The capacity crowd erupted in cheers, including country star Keith Urban and wife Nicole Kidman slapping high fives.

Even though the Penguins lead the series, there's legitimate cause for long-term concern. That's hockey. Game 1 was certainly not Pittsburgh's best game, and with the way Nashville was playing that night, should have gone to the Predators.

The Penguins have done a better job of generating shots since their terrible 12-shot game 1 showing. I know this much: If Pekka Rinne can't get back to the way he played the previous 3 rounds, the Predators are going to have a hell of a time trying to get back into this series. Pittsburgh's power play continued its struggles with an 0-for-3 performance. "At the end of the day, we're just gonna take the win and move on".

Rinne allowed his ninth goal of the Final on the 38th shot he saw. With an assist, Crosby now has 160 career playoff points (56 goals, 104 assists) and tied Mike Bossy, Gordie Howe, Bobby Smith and Al MacInnis for 20th all-time.

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Crosby, Malkin, Kessel, and playoff goals leader, Jake Guentzel, could resume filling the net in Game 4, as Rinne turns back into a pumpkin.

Pittsburgh posted a 86.0 penalty-kill percentage in its first 17 playoff games.

He is now just one goal back of Dino Ciccarelli for the most by a rookie in a single postseason.

A victory in the Stanley Cup Final. The power play has been extremely poor for the Penguins for several games now. The paths for the Penguins to overcome that are through special teams and goaltending.

It was the kind of game that served as a reward for the hardcore fans that have lived and died with the Predators from the very beginning. Along with one stuffed penguin.

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