The NHL is set up with another four-game night on Monday. All four games on April 15 will be entering Game 3 of a series, which means that the home team has been switched. One of the Game 3’s will be between the Nashville Predators and the Dallas Stars. Both teams will look to get the leg up with a win on Monday night. This game is set to start at 9:30 PM Eastern time.
Nashville put up a record of 47-29-6 throughout the regular season, which put them in the top spot in the Central Division. The Predators have done well near the end of the season, winning three in a row and five of their last six games to enter the playoffs. Nashville is coming off a nice win in Game 2 and will look to ride that momentum to a win on the road on Monday night.
The Stars have earned the fourth spot in the Central Division and the top wild-card spot with a record of 43-32-7 through the regular season. Dallas ended the regular season having won five of their last seven games. The Stars are a strong team and will look to take the series lead with a win in front of their home fans.
These two teams will meet on Monday night with a chance to take a 2-1 series lead. Each team has looked good in this series so far and both teams match up well with each other. I believe that this will lead to another strong matchup on April 15.
The Jets and the Blues met up a total of four times throughout the regular season. Winnipeg dominated the first three games of the season series, winning all three by a combined score of 18-9. St. Louis was able to bounce back with a 1-0 win in the fourth game of the season series. All four games were early in the season though, meaning they did not see each after the Blues caught fire.
The first game of this playoff series was on Wednesday night. Patrik Laine opened up the scoring in the first period, but that was all the Jets were able to put up. David Perron and Tyler Bozak each tallied a goal in the third period to pull off the win. Connor Hellebuyck stopped 24 of 26 shots, but it was Jordan Binnington who got the win. Binnington finished with 24 saves on 25 shots to give the Blues a 2-1 win.
Friday night was when Game 2 was played in Winnipeg. Mark Scheifele and Blake Wheeler each had a goal and an assist for the Jets. Dustin Byfuglien had two assists, but it was not enough. Oskar Sundqvist scored two goals, while Jay Bouwmeester put up two assists. Pat Maroon and Ryan O’Reilly each scored once to propel St. Louis to a 4-3 win.
Winnipeg was able to put up a 3-1 lead in the season series, but all four games came early in the season before the Blues figured out their game. St. Louis has come out with something to prove in this series, winning the first two games on the road. The Blues will look to grab a stranglehold on the series with a victory at home. The Predators and the Stars met up a total of five times throughout last season. Nashville took the first game of the season series in overtime. The second and third game of the season series went to Dallas. The Predators were able to bounce back with wins in the last two games of the season series. The Stars went 2-0-1 on the road against Nashville, but struggled at home.
The first game of this playoff series was hosted by Nashville on April 10. Roman Josi and P.K. Subban were both able to tally a goal for the Predators, but it was not enough. Miro Heiskanen scored a goal and added an assist. Alexander Radulov and Mats Zuccarello each scored once as well. Ben Bishop stopped 30 of 32 shots to give the Stars a 3-2 upset victory in Game 1.
Game 2 stayed in Nashville on April 13. Jamie Benn opened up the scoring in the second period, but was quickly matched by a goal by Rocco Grimaldi to tie it up. Neither team was able to score again in the third period. Craig Smith scored the game-winning goal in overtime off the second assist of the night from Calle Jarnkrok. Ben Bishop turned away 40 of 42 shots, while Pekka Rinne had 22 saves on 23 shots. The Predators finished with a 2-1 win at home.
Nashville was able to earn a 3-2 lead in the regular season series, but have gone 1-1 against the Stars in the playoffs. The Predators have been a strong road team this season and they will look for this to carry them to a win in Game 3. Nashville earned a lot of momentum from that big overtime winning goal at home on Saturday and I expect that to give them some confidence going into Game 3.
The Predators could have Brian Boyle and Wayne Simmonds miss out on Game 3. Both players are questionable going into this matchup, which could hurt if they are both missing. Both players play a really strong depth role in Nashville’s lineup. The Predators have been without Miikka Salomaki as well who plays a nice defensive depth role.
Dallas has been struggling with some injuries in their defensive corps throughout this season. The Stars are currently without Stephen Johns and Marc Methot in their defense and will likely be missing them for the entire playoff run, no matter how long it is. Martin Hanzal is also out, which stings as he adds some depth down the middle.
Both of these teams have some injury problems, but nothing of an extreme nature. The Predators could have Boyle and Simmonds in the lineup for Game 2, which would be big for them. Both players really help play a defensive role deep in the lineup, which is needed for shutting down the Stars. I believe if they are back, they could help push Nashville towards victory.
Pekka Rinne was able to put up a record of 30-19-4 through the regular season. Rinne finished the regular season with a record of .918 save percentage and a GAA of 2.42. In the first two games of this playoff series, Rinne has posted a save percentage of .923 and a GAA of 1.97. The Predators will look for Rinne to put up another strong performance on the road on Monday night.
Ben Bishop has been doing really well for the Stars throughout this season. Bishop has earned a record of 27-15-2 through his regular season games. In those game, he put up a save percentage of .934 and a 1.98 GAA. Bishop has had a .946 save percentage and a 1.92 GAA in this season’s playoffs. Bishop will look to continue to put up really strong numbers on Monday night.
Bishop has been playing out of his mind throughout this season, but Rinne has also been really strong. Rinne is not a player you can ever count out and it has been proven as he stepped up his game in the first two games of the playoff series. I expect both goalies to have another tight battle in Game 3.
These two teams have been doing well in this season series and will look to keep it going with a pivotal win in Game 3. I believe that the Predators have a good chance to pull off an upset on the road. Nashville has been the better team throughout this season, and I believe that they will carry some momentum into Monday’s matchup from their overtime win in Game 2.
BetOnline has the Stars listed as a -123 against the money line. This implies that Dallas will win this game 55 percent of the time. With how the first two games of the season series went, I believe that the Stars should not be favored by this much. I believe that the Predators have a good chance to pull off the upset, which gives them a lot of value.