Game 1: Ducks Host Predators On Short Turnaround

Photo: NHL Edit: DucksNPucks

By Michael Walters

The Anaheim Ducks have advanced to the Western Conference Final and face the Nashville Predators in Game 1 tonight. The Ducks were 2-1-0 against the Predators in the regular season. The Ducks have played the Predators twice in the playoffs in 2016 and 2011, losing both series.

Anaheim Outlook

According to Randy Carlyle, Kevin Bieksa could be available tonight. Patrick Eaves could come back later at some point in this series. Clayton Stoner is an available option as well. The Ducks did recall up center Sam Carrick and he could play on the 4th line if necessary tonight. The Ducks are going to face Nashville with only one day off.

Keys To The Game

The Ducks are going to need to get traffic in front of Pekka Rinne. His goals against average in the first two rounds has been an exceptional 1.37 and his save percentage has been .951%. The Ducks also need to improve their special teams. They are 13.9% efficient on the power play and only 69% on the penalty kill in the playoffs so far.

Anaheim Projected Lineup

Rickard Rakell – Ryan Getzlaf –Corey Perry
Andrew Cogliano – Ryan Kesler – Jakob Silfverberg
Nick RitchieAntoine Vermette – Ondrej Kase
Chris Wagner – Nate Thompson – Jared Boll

Cam FowlerSami Vatanen
Shea Theodore – Josh Manson
Hampus Lindholm – Brandon Montour

In Net
John Gibson (Probable)

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Nashville Outlook

Nashville surprised many with a sweep of the Chicago Blackhawks. They then beat the St. Louis Blues in six games. They last played on Sunday May 7th, so they had almost a full week of rest. This is the first visit to the Western Conference Final for Nashville.

Keys To The Game

Nashville brings a balanced attack with the ability to roll four lines that can each score. The Predators have been the best defensive team in the playoffs so far only allowing 14 goals in 10 games. The Predators have been 20.0% efficient on the power play and will look to work the forecheck and draw penalties against Anaheim.

Nashville Projected Lineup

Filip Forsberg – Ryan Johansen – Viktor Arvidsson
Colin Wilson  – Mike Fisher – Pontus Aberg
Colton Sissons – Calle Jarnkrok – James Neal
Cody McLeod – Vernon Fiddler – Austin Watson

Roman Josi – Ryan Ellis
Mattias Ekholm – P.K. Subban
Matt Irwin – Yannick Weber

In Net
Pekka Rinne (Probable)

For more analysis on this series, listen to our latest podcast below!

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May 12th, 2017