Photo Credit: John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images
Nothing was settled coming into Thursday night’s game against the Dallas Stars, but one thing was for sure: If Nashville wanted to attempt to grab the 4th seed in the Western Conference and home ice advantage, they HAD to win against the Stars.
On top of Pekka Rinne’s 28 save shutout, Nashville officially eliminated the Dallas Stars 2-0 in front of the 25th regular season sell-out of the year. Coupled with a 2-1 Detroit Red Wings loss to the New Jersey Devils, the Nashville Predators currently hold the 4th place spot by 1 point of the Wings.
Grabbing at least one point against the Avalanche on Saturday, the Predators would have home ice advantage for only the third time in franchise history.
After a scoreless 40 minutes where the Stars and Predators played a brisk back and forth game, Francis Bouillon broke the scoreless tie and gave the Nashville Predators a 1-0 lead at 4:28 of the third after a beautiful tipped puck past Kari Lehtonen/
With 2 minutes left in the game, Patric Hornqvist sealed the deal with a roofer in the slot to make it 2-0.
Pekka Rinne earned his 5th shutout of the season and first since January 19th against Columbus.
Here is the break down of the possible seedings for the playoffs:
Nashville can clinch the 4th seed and home ice with a Win/OT loss/SO loss vs Colorado OR a Detroit regulation loss/OT loss/SO loss to Chicago on Saturday
Detroit can clinch the 4th seed and home ice with a win of any type vs Chicago AND a Nashville regulation loss to Colorado on Saturday
Chicago can clinch the 5th seed and a matchup vs Nashville with a regulation win vs Detroit on Saturday
Powerplay – 0 for 2, 0%
Penalty Kill – 4 for 4, 100%
My Three Stars:
#1: – Pekka Rinne
#2: – Patric Hornqvist
#3: – Francis Bouillon
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