Nashville Predators (59-23-4-7) vs. Winnipeg Jets (59-22-9-2)
When: 9:30 PM ET, Monday, May 7, 2018
Where: Bell MTS Place, Winnipeg, Manitoba
Preds Get Outdone On Own Ice
The Nashville Predators (6-5) failed miserably in their bid to take a 3-2 lead in their Western Conference Second Round series against the Winnipeg Jets after dropping a 6-2 home decision at Bridgestone Arena on Saturday. The Preds outshot the visitors 40-32 and won 59% of all the face-offs, but conceded four goals in the second period and two more in the final third, managing to find the back of the net on just two occasions themselves. Yannick Weber (1 goal, 1 point during the current postseason) tied the game at 1-1 midway through the contest, while Ryan Johansen (5 goals, 11 points) cut Winnipeg’s 4-1 lead in half with a shorty at the end of the second frame.
Goalie Pekka Rinne allowed six goals on 26 shots before being pulled seven minutes into the third period for Juuse Saros, who stopped all six shots faced subsequently. Rinne has now gone 6-5 for the 2018 Stanley Cup Playoffs with a 3.22 GAA and a .898 save percentage and is 42-39 in all previous postseason appearances combined with a 2.46 GAA and a .915 save percentage. Prior to the ongoing playoffs, he had posted a 15-4-1 career tally against Winnipeg with a 2.41 GAA and a .916 save percentage. The Predators, meanwhile, are netting the 7th highest number of goals per game this postseason (3.27), while giving up the 7th highest amount defensively (3.36). They are 9th in power play (21.2%) and 5th in penalty kill (82.4%).
Jets Close In On Conference Final
Game 5 of their Western Conference Semifinals pairing against the Nashville Predators couldn’t turn out any better for the Winnipeg Jets (7-3), who took a 3-2 series lead with an important road victory, beating the hosts 6-2 at Bridgestone Arena on Saturday. Paul Stastny (4 goals, 11 points) and Dustin Byfuglien (4 goals, 12 points) scored and Kyle Connor (2 goal, 6 points) added a couple of markers in the second period, while Mark Scheifele (9 goals, 14 points) and Mathieu Perreault (1 goal, 1 point) lit the lamp in the final third, as the Jets have now found themselves just one victory away from their first ever Conference Final.
Goalie Connor Hellebuyck made 38 saves, taking his current performance record to 7-3 for the 2018 Stanley Cup Playoffs – his first ever postseason campaign – with a 2.29 GAA and a .925 save percentage. He was 6-4-1 against Nashville in all previous meetings combined ahead of the current playoffs with a 3.20 GAA and a .908 save percentage. The Jets, meanwhile, are scoring the absolute highest amount of goals per game this postseason (3.80), while conceding the 3rd lowest quantity on the defensive end (2.30). They are 4th in power play with a 25.9% return and 12th in penalty kill with 74.1% proficiency.
- Predators are 3-7 in their last 10 games following a home loss of 3 or more goals.
- Jets are 5-0 in their last 5 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of greater than .600.
- Jets are 42-10 in their last 52 home games.
“We’re going to go to Winnipeg, we’re going to win a game, then we’re going to come back to Nashville!” said P.K. Subban after Preds defeat on Saturday. “It’s that simple!” Well, it really isn’t THAT simple, as the Predators are about to visit the best home team of the regular season (32-7-2), having posted just three victories in their last 10 contests after a home defeat of three or more goals themselves. The Jets will not let this one slip though their fingers! No way!