Energized Ducks even Western finals, beat Predators 5-3

Ducks-Predators-Game-1-Getty-FTR-051417

The win gives Nashville a 2-1 series lead. They scored the first goal of the game in the first period, allowing them to lock in head coach Guy Boucher's 1-3-1 modified trap system that precludes teams from rushing the puck up the ice with speed through the neutral zone, forcing them to chip the puck in and retrieve it beneath the goal line in the offensive zone.

Nashville Predators goalie Pekka Rinne, top left, blocks a shot by Anaheim Ducks center Ryan Kesler during the second period of Game 1 in the NHL hockey Stanley Cup Western Conference finals, Friday, May 12, 2017, in Anaheim, . While Gibson turned aside 30 shots for the 5-3 win in Game 2, Rinne gave up a howler to Nick Ritchie on the game-winning goal.

After Anaheims Chris Wagner caught Nashvilles Ryan Ellis with a high stick in the final minutes of the third period, Predators defenceman Roman Josi scored the game-winner on the ensuing power play. For the second straight game, Corey Perry was held without a shot on goal.

Johansen, whose goal and assist got the Predators off to a quick start Sunday night, had no trouble making his feelings about Kesler known.

Laviolette admitted however that he had wondered if the Ducks would be able to defend their lead after watching Gibson's display in goal. Hundreds of empty orange seats ringed the rink while the Nashville Predators largely dominated the first two periods of their 3-2 overtime victory.

"That's where the secondary guys have to take pride in pushing themselves to get that extra step to score goals that could be a difference".

Game 2 was another tight, low-scoring game, but the ice was clearly tilted Pittsburgh's way in the third period.

"Today's player wants to know why you're doing something", said Carlyle, who won a Stanley Cup with the Ducks in 2007 but was sacked five years later.

Vatanen ripped a shot over the shoulder of Rinne late in the first period and Silfverberg one-timed a lovely pass from Rickard Rakell from in close just 39 seconds into the second.

It was the third goal of the playoffs for Ritchie, and while it allowed Anaheim to overcome another poor start, it wasn't the biggest one he has scored in this postseason. "I don't know how you can cheer for a player like that", the Nashville pivot said of his counterpart.

"Whoever was in, we had a ton of confidence in", captain Sidney Crosby said.

Game three is slated for Tuesday night at 8:00 ET.

It's one of hockey's Original Six clichés for goal-scorers, who get as much credit for the pucks that go in off the back of their trousers as the ones they snipe top shelf. Josi's goal sent Nashville to its 10th straight postseason home win dating to last season.

But look closer at Gibson's larger body of work and you'll see a young netminder who has been very good and is now heating up to great.

In yet another physical game, the first period was relatively uneventful with neither team scoring and only one penalty against Anaheim.

When the score was 1:1 in the final series of the Western conference moved to the "Bridgestone Arena" in Nashville.

While the nature of Josi's goal was fortuitous, it was a deserved win for the Predators, who outshot the Ducks 40-20.

Halfway through the period, the Ducks did what they do best and created havoc in front of the Nashville net. He never saw the puck pass the goal line. No one has gotten to the Predators since. With two shots the goalkeeper failed. We weren't our best, but we lost in overtime. We just really keep the same approach.

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