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Preds Win Game Four, Series Shifts Back to Nashville

Preds Win Game Four, Series Shifts Back to Nashville
Treigh Patterson

The Nashville Predators entered game four with their backs against the wall.

After a disappointing outcome in game three, last night became a must-win. A 3-1 series deficit would be an insurmountable feat to overcome, so Nashville had to ensure that didn’t happen.

The game started off with both teams moving fast. Winnipeg did not want a repeat of how game three started, and Nashville could not afford to fall behind early. The Jets delivered more shots on net, but it was Nashville who held the edge in high-danger chances. Both squads continued to exchange chances, including this one from the Jets:

But it was the Preds broke through first with three minutes left in the first.

Mike Fisher won the offensive zone faceoff, which ultimately led to their first goal. Yannick Weber threw the puck towards the net, where a scrum ensued. Winnipeg tried furiously to clear the puck, but to no avail. Eventually, the puck found Ryan Hartman’s stick, and he was able to flip it past Hellebuyck.

The Jets started the second period on the power play, and they were looking to even up the score. The Preds had other plans, however. Nashville killed the penalty with relative ease and then took command. They controlled the pace of play, and limited Winnipeg’s chances.

Then, 14 minutes into the period, Nashville was awarded their first power play following a slash from Byfuglien. About a minute in, the Preds struck again.

Nashville cycled on the man-advantage, and eventually P.K. Subban blasted a one-timer through Hellebuyck. This was Subban’s third straight game with a power-play goal, and he is starting to live up to the Norris Trophy standard. The Preds carried a two-goal lead into the third period, but as everyone knows in this series, no lead is safe.

The final period of play was as nerve-racking as they come. Preds’ fans remember the blown-lead from game three and were hoping not to see a repeat. Somewhat surprisingly, Nashville dominated the first half of the period. They weren’t allowing shots, and actually generated a few chances for themselves.

However, this did not last and Winnipeg finally took the reins with about eight minutes left. Winnipeg finally took full control, yet were still unable to find the back of the net. In part, thanks to individual efforts, including this one from Hartman that saved a goal:

With two minutes left in the game Subban was called for cross-checking, leading to a Winnipeg power play. Nashville did a decent job killing the first half of it, but with just under a minute left, Winnipeg finally beat Rinne. Laine received the puck right off a face off and fired it immediately for his first goal of the series.

Winnipeg did their best to add another before the period expired, but the Preds held on and evened up the series. The series is now a best-of-three matchup, and Nashville owns the home-ice advantage.

Game five will take place back home in Nashville tomorrow night at 9:30 p.m. ET

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