Image: AP / AP
5 reasons why Nashville must bury his title dream again
After six games, Nashville Predator's playoffs are already back over. This is a major disappointment for the best team in the Central Division. But that's clear: too many players were out of shape. And the coaches also have to go through the books.
It differs from last year. At that time, Nashville Predators went as the best team in the regular season in the playoffs and only failed in the second round of equally powerful Winnipeg Jets.
This year, the qualification of "Preds" was much more complicated. The title of the division they only got very thin. Expectations were deeper than they were, and yet they were subject. Roman Josi and Co. failed in the first round in six games this year to the Dallas Stars.
Image: AP / AP
"It's a disappointment. We had to find a way to win this game, and we didn't succeed," Captain Josi tried to find an explanation after the game. "Such a defeat is hard to accept," added striker Austin Watson.
Josi faces criticism in his second year as captain and another early playoff. It is partly safe, but the 28-year-old was with two goals and helps with the top shooter of Predators and otherwise one of the better players. The reason why Nashville failed to return is shared across the team.
After this point, we could almost complete the analysis. Nashville's overwhelming game was unfortunate in qualification and was the worst in the league with a success rate of 12.9 percent. The fact that it was enough to win the title of the Central Division was surprising enough.
But the absolute lid only followed in the playoff, 15 Predators had in six games against Dallas overpayment. Didn't use any of them. They didn't make a single power play here.
You won't win a flowerpot of course. Roman Josi knows that too. Berner leads the first Powerplay line in Nashville, usually he is Nashville player with most shot attempts But in these playoffs he was barely in surplus, and in 15 minutes of power play he only gave one shot, and then the special duel was ready for Dallas. players do not score the opponent's goal as desired, two goals per game are not enough to win a series, in particular, the star striker was far from the top form with the US state of Tennessee.
Filip Forsberg , Ryan Johansen and Viktor Arvidsson are actually the most dangerous storm trio in the Trees. In the playoffs, they came together to make four pointers. Arvidsson was particularly invisible and could not be credited with any goal or help. Meanwhile, Dallas top line has earned 16 points with Jamie Benn, Tyler Seguin and Alexander Radulov.
But Nashville's second line also went under the mark. Kyle Turris remains a false move. Since the 17 points in his first 17 games for "Preds" his return is now just 0.4 points per game. Mikael Granlund, who joined the team in exchange for Kevin Fiala in Minnesota, also failed to live up to expectations with two goals and five assists.
Characteristic of misery in Nashville attacks is the fact that Rocco Grimaldi (three goals) was their best striker. The center was not even in the team in match one. The striker duel was also ready for Dallas.
What has Nashville promised for his defense over the past three years? Quartet with Roman Josi, Ryan Ellis, P.K. Subban and Mattias Ekholm are among the best that NHL has to offer.
There wasn't much to see in the series against the stars. The predators defended their opponents defensively and easily behind the goal. So the Dallas striker was able to develop his game and confused Nashville.
Especially the Swedish Mattias Ekholm was a shadow of his The 28-year-old sat too often in the penalty box and made unnecessary losses in the record and could not unpack his usual physical game. The same applies to P.K. Subban, who was aggressively productive, but not defiantly convinced.
Ryan Ellis, Josi's defense partner, did not reach his usual level. Particularly striking was that the Canadian does not move at his usual speed. And even Josi should not be excluded from any criticism. Although the Swiss was convincing for long distances, he also made so many record losses as no other defender in Nashville. A bright spot in Tennessee may have been just Dante Fabbro. The 20-year-old came from Boston University more or less directly in the playoffs and fought for a regular place.
In Dallas, 19-year-old Miro Heiskanen already takes a very big responsibility – he has most of the stars in the stars – and makes it convincing. With John Klingberg and Esa Lindell he forms a trio who has surpassed "Preds" star defense.
Goalie goalkeeper at eye level
For once, Pekka Rinne could not win a series for Nashville. The Finnish goalkeeper started out extremely well in the series, but had to give in the matches four and five but beat more often than he liked. He rehabilitated himself during the night. Rinne held 49 out of 51 shots, giving their frontline players the chance to win the game. But as we now know, things turned out differently.
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Even for not only Pekka Rinne, but also Ben Bishop played well on the other side. The 32-year-old held 94.5 percent of all shots shot at his goal throughout the series. And tonight he granted the only decisive goal less.
The predators did not even seem to be fully adapted to Dallas. In other words, the stars found an answer to everything Nashville offered. An effective way was that Dallas always put pressure on the record's leading player, no matter what zone he was in.
The Texans provoked many record losses or forced "Preds" into risky build-up from their own zone, which also resulted in puck losses or illegal trigger strokes.
The fact that Nashville couldn't react to the star's aggressive style (and the nasty power play by the way) is also part of coaching Attributed to Peter Laviolette and his team. The Americans led the predators two years ago in the Stanley Cup final and a year later the Presidential trophy. He doesn't seem likely to be kicked. But at least he has reconsidered his system.
Nashville has eliminated three out of four division wins. Washington must be the last quartet in a seventh match against Carolina. Who can cause discomfort to the capital's fans: Tampa Bay failed in four games, Calgary in five, Nashville in six … and Washington in seven?
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