For the first time, the Nashville Predators will go Duck hunting in the Stanley Cup playoffs as they will open against Anaheim at the Honda Center in a late game on Wednesday night.
The Predators were 3-1 against the Ducks in the regular season but you can't read much in to the record as each game seemed to be at an odd time or in a strange circumstance.
When the Preds played the Ducks in the season opener in Nashville, on October 9, the Predators beat a hapless Ducks squad 4-1. The Ducks had a horrible start to the season and that game was a part of that.
In Anaheim, on November 7, the Predators suffered a horrible loss when they forgot to play the last two seconds of the game and lost 5-4. It was a freakish type game that was completely out of character for the Predators.
On January 5, the Preds scored two empty netters and Pekka Rinne stopped 40 shots in a 4-1 win at Anaheim. The game was nip and tuck and was actually a 2-1 game until the first empty netter with 52 seconds left.
On March 24th, the Predators were playing an excellent game against the Ducks and gave up thre3 goals at the end to make it a close 5-4 win.
It should be an interesting series. I'll have more from Barry Trotz later this morning.
The Predators will practice at 10:30 a.m. at Bridgestone Arena both Monday and Tuesday morning.
Here is the complete schedule for the series with times that are subject to change.
Wednesday, April 13 at Anaheim, 9:30 p.m.
Friday, April 15 at Anaheim, 9:30 p.m.
Sunday, April 17 at Nashville, 5 p.m.
Wednesday, April 20 at Nashville, 7:30 p.m.
*Friday, April 22 at Anaheim, 9:00 p.m. TBA
*Sunday, April 24 at Nashville, TBD
*Tuesday, April 26 at Anaheim, TBD
All game will be on Fox Sports TN and nationally in Canada on TSN.
For Anaheim Ducks reads from the Southland view check out J.P. Hoonstra, The Battle of California, the OC Register, Anaheim Calling, Quackalackin', Ducks and Cover, and the LA Times.
Predators Blues Wrap-Up...
Here is our game story from Saturday night.
Josh Cooper had his game story, notes column, and postgame ponderings.
From the blog world reports come from Amanda DiPaolo, Mark Willoughby, Dirk Hoag (with his advances stats), Jeremy Gover, and Fang Finger Fever.
The other side of the story in St. Louis comes from the Post-Dispatch, BlueNote Zone, Frozen Notes, and St. Louis Game Time.
Here is a heads up in advance that Ryan Porth's RLD Hockey Radio will have shows on both Tuesday and Wednesday at Noon Central. On Tuesday, we will have Craig Custance to preview the Western Conference playoffs. On Wednesday, we will look at the East with a guest that we cannot reveal at this time.
In Pred Nation...
The Nashville Chapter of the PHWA announced that Francis Bouillon was the Preds' Bill Masterton Trophy nominee. The last paragraph of this article shows how deserving he is of the nomination.
Amanda DiPaolo takes an early look at the Predators - Ducks match-up and has a second post explaining that expectations have never been higher for the Predators.
David Boclair looks at the match-up with a focus on the Ducks top line.
Ryan Porth looks at whether the Preds will get over the hump this year. He also has a final look at what the standings would have looked like with the Olympic points system.
Josh Cooper breaks down the Anaheim Ducks.
Sam Page puts the Predators current run in historical context.
Mark Willoughby looks back at his Central Division preseason predictions.
John Manasso looks at Mike Fisher as a key for the Preds in the playoffs.
Pierre McGuire and Mike Milbury had plenty of love for Nashville in the playoffs. In addition to sending the Preds deep in the playoffs one of them picked Shea Weber for the Norris and Barry Trotz for the Adams.
AJ covers a bunch of topics in a Get er done post.
Hands of Cement returns with dreams of eating Fruit Loops out of the Stanley Cup.
Smashville Sports is happy to be wrong about his playoff prediction for the Preds.
Predator prospect Ben Ryan, who's Notre Dame Fighting Irish lost in the semifinals of the NCAA Frozen Four will be joining the Milwaukee Admirals.
Admirals Roundtable has the story of the Ads 4-3 Western Division clinching win over Peoria on Saturday and the playoff rundown for the Admirals. They also have the story of the Ads season ending 4-1 win over Grand Rapids.
The Admirals playoffs start Thursday against the Texas Stars. Here is the schedule.
Around the NHL...
In a real tribute to the integrity of the NHL, three teams with nothing to gain gave 110% to knock off teams in playoff contention. Tampa Bay, Detroit, and Minnesota played like it was the seventh game of the Stanley Cup Finals in dashing the hopes of Carolina, Chicago, and Minnesota. Chicago made the playoffs thanks to the Wild's efforts.
Ryan Porth has team capsules for all 16 playoff teams. Here are the East teams and the ones from the West.
It appears that Sidney Crosby's return for the first round of the playoffs is unlikely.
The Dark Blue Jacket gives everyone the chance to vote on NHL Awards.
Big weekend for coach movement. On Saturday, Ottawa fired Cory Clouston and assistants Greg Carvel and Brad Lauer. On Sunday Peter DeBoer was fired by the Florida Panthers, and Jacques Lemaire announced that he would not return to the Devils.
Adam Foote played his last NHL game on Sunday against the Oilers and the Avs won 4-3 in overtime. Here is the Avs video tribute.
St Louis's win over Nashville on Saturday was a costly one as it moved them ahead of Toronto in the overall standings so that the did not finish in the bottom ten in points and have an option to keep their first pick in this summer's draft. Now it reverts to the Avalanche.
Odds and Ends...
Florida today has a video perspective on the space Shuttle Columbia who made the first shuttle flight 30 years ago this week.
There is a huge debate in Utah about the mining of tar sands to produce oil.
Buddy Oakes for PredsOntheGlass