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NHL Conference Finals: Nashville Predators vs Anaheim Ducks Game 1 Prediction

The Western Conference Finals in the NHL get started on Friday with the Nashville Predators facing the Anaheim Ducks in the first game of a best-of-seven series. There’s plenty of action left in store for hockey fans on the road to the Stanley Cup Finals. Get the full preview and prediction on the first game here…

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Nashville Predators at Anaheim Ducks

  • When: Tuesday, May 9, 2017, 7:30 PM ET
  • Where: Madison Square Garden – New York City, NY
  • Moneyline: Rangers -176 vs Senators +159
  • Over/Under: 5 

Bet on the Predators

The Predators have turned the corner and are now in the Western Conference Finals for the first time in that franchise’s history. 

Not only that, but Nashville has become the first No. 8 seed to knockout and sweep a No. 1 in the Stanley Cup playoffs when they defeated the Chicago Blackhawks in the first round. Then they defeated the St. Louis Blues in six games with the last game played last Sunday that ended 3-1. 

The Predators sport a fierce lineup headlined by a steely defense led by goalie Pekka Rinne, who leads all goalies with a 1.37 goals-against average and .951 save percentage, and P.K. Subban, who’s effectively shutdown the likes of  the Blues’ Vladimir Tarasenko and Chicago’s Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane. 

Nashville heads into this series having lost two of three to Anaheim in the regular season, but this team seems bent of finally making it all the way to the Stanley Cup. 

Bet on the Ducks

Anaheim edged out the Edmonton Oilers in seven games in their Western Conference semifinal series. The Ducks ended a five game Game 7 losing streak on Wednesday with a 2-1 home win. 

Goalie John Gibson dusted himself off after being pulled in the Ducks’ 7-1 defeat in Edmonton, to produce 23 saves in his best game of the postseason. 

The Ducks sport the best winning percentage in the NHL at .643 and are now 22-12 since the start of the 2015 postseason. However, Anaheim heads into this series without the services of winger Patrick Eaves and defenseman Kevin Bieksa, something which might affect their fate in this series. 

It’s not the first time these two face each other in the Stanley Cup Playoffs; the Predators defeated the Ducks back in 2017 in seven games in the first round of that series, which also resulted in former head coach Bruce Boudreau being canned.

Game Prediction: The Predators enter this series with a week’s rest, while the Ducks just got done with their series and will have around 48 hours’ worth to take a breather. I’m picking Nashville to take first blood (and expecting them to win the series in seven).