Thursday, 13 December, 2018

Mayors bet music, BBQ sauce over Blues-Predators semifinal

Frederick Owens | 14 May, 2017, 04:47

Playing hockey's version of keep-away most of Sunday, the Nashville Predators owned wide advantages in faceoffs and shots, cashing in enough of their chances to earn a 3-1 win over the St. Louis Blues that gave them a 2-1 lead in the best-of-seven Western Conference semifinal.

St. Louis Blues right wing Vladimir Tarasenko (91), of Russian Federation, skates to the bench after scoring the winning goal against the Nashville Predators during the third period in Game 2 of an NHL hockey second-round playoff series F.

Ryan Ellis put the Predators ahead 2-1 early in the third period, but Jori Lehtera tied it 4 1/2 minutes later before Tarasenko's goal ended the Predators' team-record, five-game playoff winning streak.

The action moves to Music City as the Nashville Raptors are getting home ice against the St. Louis Blues in game three of their National Hockey League second round playoff series.

While it rattled the team momentarily, they managed to go up 3-1 heading into the third period until crowd momentum helped the Blues score two goals in two minutes.

The Nashville Predators returned to the Music City Sunday to play Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Playoffs on home ice. Jake Allen was the reason why it was even close. Allen finished with 23 saves as the Blues lost consecutive road games for the first time since February 28 and March 3.

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In net for Nashville was Pekka Rinne, who continues to shine each time he heads out onto the ice for the Predators.

The Predators just won 2-1 to take a 3-1 series lead moments ago, and Ellis keeping his hot run going is a big reason why. The Ellis-Josi pairing and the Ekholm-Subban duo combined for 20 shot attempts, with Josi firing eight times on net.

"It's the consecutive penalties that are getting us into trouble", Blues captain Alex Pietrangelo said.

Ryan Getzlaf had a goal and an assist, and Rickard Rakell, Chris Wagner and Ryan Kesler also scored for Anaheim, which lost the first two games at home. "They start to feel more confident". Louis' best player throughout the day, including 17 in a second period where the Blues were outshot 18-4. They were flat-footed in the first two periods, and it cost them.

"I think our puck possession in the offensive zone, we have to be stronger on the puck". However, they are continually putting pressure on Jake Allen to be superhuman every night in order to pull that off.

For much of Game 1 and in the third period of Game 2, the speed difference between the two teams was evident. He did have two assists in the previous four games, which included a great individual effort leading to Joel Edmundson's overtime victor. He picked up a goal and an assist in Nashville's loss, giving him two goals and five assists in the postseason. "If you're going to play a long time, you're going to have adversity", the 23-year-old Gibson told the Orange County Register. The Preds were razor-sharp from the start of the game and controlled most of the play.

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