The Nashville Predators don’t have a great brush with the Stanley Cup Playoffs in the past.
Since 2004, the Predators have missed the playoffs just once. Aside from that they’ve been eliminated in the first round every time except for last year, when eliminated in the second round by the Vancouver Canucks.
This year, however, Nashville may have the tools to get to the Conference finals.
With last night’s 6-1 win against the Chicago Blackhawks, the Predators moved into the 4th seed and one point ahead the Detroit Red Wings.
Alexander Radulov has served as a nice addition for the Predators going three points in three games, while Shea Weber and Ryan Suter have been at true for m from the blue line in front of Pekka Rinne’s brilliance in the crease.
Meanwhile, Colin Wilson has matched his last year career high of 34 points with nearly 20 games less under his belt, and has shown great strides in developing beyond a depth centre.
And when it comes to showing up for the games, Barry Trotz did just that last night. The eyes were shifting between the Nashville bench boss and Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane, who was a target of criticism of “cheating” his way through the Predators’ zone in a February game.
Kane wanted retaliation last night, but, instead, fell victim with the Hawks’ 6-1 loss. Teams with a vocal bench boss follow suit, and deliver.
And there’s a good chance we’ll see the Predators, at full strength, deliver at least a couple series wins this playoffs.