The Pittsburgh Penguins and Nashville Predators drop the puck on Game 3 of the NHL Stanley Cup Final. The Predators are down 0-2, they had their chances, and have been out shooting the Penguins severely in this series. As I’ve said before about the Penguins, though, they know how to capitalize when they are presented with chances. However, let’s be honest, Pekka Rinne helped the Pens out some, too. I don’t want to take anything away from the Penguins, because they are up 2-0 right now and are in firm control of the Stanley Cup Final.
In any event, Rinne has been a disaster for the Predators. He has had a series of a gaffes that has doomed the Preds. He is a reason why they are here to begin with, but now that they’re here he is doing a poor job. If you recall, in Game 1 the Penguins went 37 minutes without recording a single shot. On the 37th minute, they got the shot that gave them the lead and win. In Game 2, he had a meltdown in the 3rd period. It took only 10 seconds for the Penguins to open up the second in the 3rd, and they didn’t look back.
Then there was another goal, and another goal, and another. The Penguins were outplayed up to that point, but all it took was a few minutes for the game to get away from them. 3:28 passed in the 3rd period and the score was all of the sudden, 4-1. Rinne was chased, and the effort the Predators put in went up in smokes.
The Predators outshot the Penguins, 38-27, but it didn’t matter on the scoreboard. Nor did it matter in Game 1, when Nashville topped the Penguins in shots, 26-12. In total, the shots are 64 to 39 in favour of the Predators. Maybe the breaks will go the Predators’ way at home in Nashville. Get our free Penguins vs. Predators Game 3 pick below at The Sports Geek.
Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Nashville Predators Game 3 Pick
There’s no secrets here at what must be done for the Predators. Rinne has to wake up and play like he has in the previous rounds or this is going to be a sweep. No way the Predators win a single game if Rinne plays like he did in Game 1 and 2. His save percentage for Game 1 equated to 0.634, and in Game 2 he had a 0.84 save percentage. If you’re new to hockey, anything below 0.90 would be considered poor.
The Penguins haven’t even really played their best, and they have a 2-0 head. However, it could be a double-edged sword if the Pens think it’s going to be this easy for the whole series. Maybe it will be, but if Rinne comes to life the Preds will have something to work with.
Pittsburgh is in Rinne’s head, they’ve frustrated him and I don’t know if a couple days off is going to change anything. He was prone to going hot and cold in the regular season, and Rinne may have ran out of heat just a couple weeks too short. This game comes down to Rinne. The Nashville offence is going to come hard, but will their goaltender hold up? Despite no Ryan Johansen in this series, his presence wouldn’t have made a difference anyway. I’d look at the OVER in this game., especially at plus-money. I think it’s going to be a fun one.
PICK: OVER 5.5 (+115)