Back home, Predators eager to match Ducks' physical play

Edmonton Oilers goaltender Cam Talbot is interviewed during a final media conference of the season at Rogers Place in Edmonton Alta. on Friday

X-factor: Ryan Ellis. Nashville always has a defenseman who goes from sleeper to an on-the-radar threat.

Some are dressed in stripes.

It's no secret that Carrie Underwood is fiercely loyal to the Nashville Predators hockey team (her husband is captain, after all), but some Anaheim Ducks fans weren't pleased at the singer throwing shade at their team.

Being behind isn't a new situation for the Ducks, who lost the first two games of their second-round series against Edmonton but came back to win in seven games.

They werent necessarily the wrong calls. Worse yet, on the second non-goal, Nashville received a goalie interference penalty.

Here in Nashville, they've have learned just enough about the game to cheer for nearly anything, but they also know when the refs are screwing 'em.

Just when the Ducks appeared to be in serious danger of losing two straight home games to start their second straight series, they made a thrilling surge of four goals in less than 19 minutes.

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Game 4 is Thursday night in Nashville. And with how close and how physical both teams have been playing, you can bet the officials will once again have their hands full.

"We're going to need that", Cogliano said.

Friday night's opener against Nashville in the Western Conference Finals (WCF) was a huge disappointment for DucksNation. And the wait was definitely worth it.

The teams played a scoreless first period, though the Predators surged toward the end of the opening 20 minutes, taking 13 of the last 14 shots on goal. Just two days after finishing off the Oilers in the second round, Anaheim struggled to keep up at times in its second conference finals appearance in three years. I havent been in a building with that much energy in my life.”.

So ... Johansen ... not a fan of Kesler. But even with the Predators controlling the last line change, head coach Peter Laviolette did not shelter the teams top scorer from the Ducks top checkers.

"They have a lot of talent out there", Johansen said.

The Penguins didn't lack for opportunities to jump on the Senators but four first-period power plays - including 45 seconds of a 5-on-3 - went nowhere. That earned McLeod an instigator penalty along with a game misconduct.

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Nashville was able to kill off the Anaheim Power Play with relative ease backed by an ear-splitting crowd cheering every deflection and clear.

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) - A few moments after James Neal crumpled Anaheim's Brandon Montour with a vicious check, the Nashville forward took a pass from P.K. Subban and ripped a shot past three Ducks for the winning overtime goal.

Forsberg tied it up with his third goal in as many games.

Forsberg then tied the game 3:54 into the third on a rebound and Josi caught Ducks goalie John Gibson looking the wrong way on a rebound for the easy game-winner. Josi was assisted on his goal by Viktor Arvidsson and Mattias Ekholm.

Anaheim barely had more possession 52% to 48%.

Carlyle admitted that as a whole on the night, the Predators did outshoot, but did not believe as it was dominant at the shot clock said it was.

After all, this was Game 2 of a best-of-seven series. “We just kept pounding them.

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