NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – The Predators completed a clean sweep of the Chicago Blackhawks in round one of the NHL Playoffs with a 4-1 win Thursday night in Nashville.
Roman Josi got the first goal of the night when his slap shot beat Corey Crawford nine minutes in the second period to make it 1-0. It was Josi’s first goal of the post season.
In the third period, the Predators got a quirky goal for some insurance.
Colton Sissons shot bounced back under Crawford, and when Crawford slid he accidentally knocked the puck in the net himself to make it 2-0 Nashville.
Since Sissons was the last Predator to touch the puck, he was awarded his second goal of the playoffs.
The start of the night was Rinne though. He came into Game 4 with 93 saves on 95 shots and was up to the task.
When Chicago brought the pressure he stoned Jonthan Toews with a glove save with 17 minutes to play and three minutes later he also denied Patrick Kane.
Josi (2) struck again with just over nine minutes to play for a 3-0 lead, and at that point the party was on in Smashville as 17,113 fans celebrated an historic night in Nashville.
Toews scored a power play goal to cut the lead to 3-1, but Arvidsson’s (2) empty netter with just over a minute to play ended any hopes of a Chicago comeback.
It’s the first playoff series sweep in Nashville Predator history and it’s the first time in major pro sports history an 8 seed has swept a 1 in a best of 7 series.
“You plan a game plan to how you want to play, and I thought our guys played really well,” said head coach Peter Laviolette. “I thought they executed really well. I guess the answer is yes again. We went into the series and knowing we were playing a real good team, we said all along that we really respect our opponent. They’ve been a terrific team for a long time. They have real good players over there. They’re well coached, and we knew we were going to have a lot on our hands.”
Predators Captain Mike Fisher added, “We did a great job. We beat a top team and a great team. Now it’s just a little bit of rest and getting ready for the next series. That’s kind of bottom line, to enjoy the win and get back to business.”
The Predators advance to round two where they will face either Minnesota or St. Louis. The Blues lead that series (3-1).