The confident looking Nashville Predators can close in on a trip to the Eastern Conference Finals with a win tonight. A win would set-up a potential close out scenario in St. Louis for Game 5.
The Predators are certainly looking like a team who is worthy of that, and worthy of taking their show all the way to the Stanley Cup Finals. After a decade of disappointment in the playoffs, the Predators finally look like a team you can believe in.
Less than a year ago P.K. Subban was traded to the Predators from the Montreal Canadiens. In return, another defenceman, Shea Weber, was sent to Montreal. At first, it appeared that the Canadiens won the trade. However, we all know best not to judge a book by only the first-half of its contents alone.
The end result is a win for Subban. Weber never quite developed and identity like Subban did in his time with the Canadiens. A fan favourite, Subban, was helping the Preds put together a quest for the Stanley Cup.
Weber is out, while Subban is still playing, so that alone tells you who won this war. The Habs may be regretting the trade for a very long, while the Predators will look like geniuses for pulling it off if they can get to the finals.
There is still a roadblock in their way. They still have to beat the Blues, and then beat either the Oilers or the Ducks. What would be waiting for them at the Stanley Cup Finals would probably be the test of the year for them. Let’s get right to the Blues vs. Predators Game 4 pick.
St. Louis Blues vs. Nashville Predators Game 4 Pick
Subban is the first defenceman in Predator history to record 3 points in a single playoff game. He pulled off the feat in Game 1, which ultimately resulted in a win for the Predators. Subban has been excelling and a point of interest in the media, too. The Canadiens can’t ignore what their former leader has been doing, either. Nashville have lost just 1 game all playoffs long. They shockingly swept the Blackhawks, and then fell in Game 2 for their only blemish in the playoffs.
In the playoffs, the Preds have averaged 3 goals per game, and allowing 1.4 goals a game. They can win either on defence or offence, which makes them so dangerous. You can’t exactly force them into playing a certain way, because they have the ability to adapt and play that brand of hockey. Regardless of the Game 3 loss, though, the Blues have been playing quality hockey, too.
They knocked off the Wild in the first-round, and were 4-1-0 heading into the playoffs. St. Louis have averaged about 2 goals per game in the playoffs. It’s mostly been netminder Jake Allen who’s been their catalyst.
They’ve allowed 2.1 goals a game in the postseason overall. The offence has not been playing particularly well. I was originally thinking we see a split in St. Louis and then Nashville. However, I am not too keen on fading this confident Predator team at this point. They may very well be on a collision course with the Stanley Cup Finals. I like a pick on the Predators to take a 3-1 series lead. The sportsbooks are setting up a trap with that attractive price on St. Louis.
PICK: PREDATORS (-155)