Ducks eager for rematch with Rinne's Predators in West final

Ducks eager for rematch with Rinne's Predators in West final

The vaunted two-way forward was a one-man machine in the offensive end: he opened the scoring with an unassisted tally, a puck to the top corner that Rinne never saw on Anaheim's first shot of the game.

The Nashville Predators have reached their first Western Conference final in franchise history and that has spread hockey fever far beyond their arena and the team's loyal legion of fans.

Thanks to their gritty and workman-like play, it may be time to put the Tennessee capital and their upstart Nashville Predators and their raucous home rink, the Bridgestone Arena on the proverbial National Hockey League map.

The Ducks admitted they were lifeless in an unengaged start to an eventual 3-2 overtime loss in Game 1.

The NHL playoff game between the Anaheim Ducks and Nashville Predators will be broadcast on the NBCSN and CBC in Canada. One of those games was their Game 7 win against the Capitals which might have been their best game of the playoffs and the first time they really started to get back to the identity they established previous year.

The X-factor in the series is Ducks goalie John Gibson, who has been pulled twice but responded well both times. But somehow, after a seven-game series the likes of the one Anaheim had with Edmonton, it is as if the brain and the heart required a little more time to recharge. The Ducks stifled the speed of the Oilers, holding off any final chances to advance to the Western Conference Final. Ducks center Antoine Vermette sees no issue with them coming down from their Game 7 high into a new series 48 hours later. It was a six-game victory in 2011 and a seven-game triumph last spring. "We just need to get back to playing our game". This will be the fifth meeting between the two sides in the last 11 seasons.

Silfverberg set career highs in goals (23) and points (49) during the regular season, and it's no surprise he's a big cog in the Anaheim offense in the playoffs, notching eight goals and 12 points through 12 games.

The Predators went into Game 1 with three extra days of rest.

Ducks' reward for Game 7 win is date with Rinne and Preds
Still, it would have been valuable to force the Predators to play from behind in a series for the first time in these playoffs. Jake Guentzel delayed, drifting toward the left side of the net with the puck before dishing it off to Rust in the slot.

"We knew they were going to come hard", Gibson said.

The Penguins will have close to a full complement for the first game of the conference final. All of those things are staples in which we try to create a strong power play with. "We were good to go". Ellis, a defenseman, and Johansen are tied for team's scoring lead with nine points, and Ellis is tied with another defenseman, Josi, for the team lead in goals (four).

Mike Hoffman and Mark Stone scored in the first period to open up the scoring, giving the Senators a 2-0 lead after one period.

NOTES: Anaheim remained without two key injured veterans.

Patrick Eaves (leg) and Logan Shaw (lower body) will not play, with Shaw's timetable unknown and Eaves being unlikely for this series.

The Ducks nearly certainly wouldn't be in the conference final were it not for the shocking scoring exploits of veteran center Ryan Getzlaf, who has eight goals in 11 playoff games - more than halfway to the 15 goals he scored in 74 regular-season contests. A 6 p.m. local start time combined with Southern California's legendarily bad Friday traffic to leave thousands of empty seats in Honda Center at the opening faceoff.

Anaheim were playing in their third overtime game over the past five and their power-play woes continued Friday, going scoreless on those advantages.