Predators, Forsberg force Game 7 with win in Winnipeg

3 Comments

After seeing the Bruins, Sharks, and Penguins fail to fight off elimination, the Nashville Predators dug deep and gave the second round one Game 7 after beating the Winnipeg Jets 4-0.

That score might make it seem like this was a breeze for the Predators, but Game 6 began with some real challenges. The Jets failed to score on three first-period power-play opportunities, and went 0-for-4 overall, as Pekka Rinne bounced back from a tough Game 5.

Rinne was just one of several prominent Predators to come up big with this team’s historic season on the line.

[NBC’s Stanley Cup Playoff Hub]

Viktor Arvidsson scored what would stand as the game-winning goal just 1:02 into the contest, avoiding a high-sticking infraction to score a bit of an odd one. Arvidsson ended up capping the scoring, too, with an empty-netter.

Arvidsson’s linemate Filip Forsberg was the Predators player who really stole the show, though.

It almost seems like the slick Swede “only scores highlight reel goals.” His first was, somehow, the slightly less impressive of the two, even though he fought off defensive work that would have earned a power play and also roofed it against Connor Hellebuyck:

Forsberg really put things out of reach with his 3-0 goal, and he’ll likely dominate highlight reels accordingly. After creating a great chance that was narrowly stopped, Forsberg made an audacious between-the-legs move to score his second tally of the contest:

Just jaw-dropping stuff.

During this series, the Jets have highlighted their quick-strike abilities. Simply put, they have snipers and playmakers who can turn a playoff game on  its head, from Patrik Laine‘s deadly shot to Mark Scheifele‘s all-around play and Blake Wheeler‘s under-the-radar stardom. It’s especially impressive that Nashville contained those weapons in front of what ended up being a despondent Winnipeg crowd.

The Predators, particularly Forsberg, showed that they have the sort of high-end forwards who can turn a coin flip into a laugher, too, though. Forsberg (2G, 1A), Arvidsson (2G, 1A), and Ryan Johansen (2A) came up huge alongside Rinne for the Preds, and now this fascinating series is down to one high-pressure game.

Now that this series is going the distance, the two teams will get a little bit of an extra breather, as Game 7 takes place at 8 p.m. ET on Thursday. You can find out which team will face the Vegas Golden Knights in the 2018 Western Conference Final by tuning in on NBCSN or streaming the action live.

It’s difficult to predict what will happen or which team will come out on top in that big contest, but chances are, it will be absolutely spellbinding TV.

Maybe Forsberg & Co. even have a little extra magic left over for what should be a rowdy home crowd in Nashville?

James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @cyclelikesedins.

Notable playoff performances on NBCSN: Kane’s hat trick tops Kings

Leave a comment

Hockey Week in America continues Friday with some big-time individual playoff performances.

The Western Conference foes dueled to a Game 7 that went into double overtime. Dallas relied on St. Louis native Ben Bishop and his 52 saves, the 5th-most saves in a Game 7 in history, to nearly defeat the Blues, but St. Louis prevailed 2-1, on the way to their historic 2019 Stanley Cup run.

Kenny Albert, Eddie Olczyk and Pierre McGuire called the action from Enterprise Center in St. Louis, Mo.

You can catch Kane’s Game 5 hat trick Friday on NBCSN beginning at 12 a.m. ET or watch the stream here.

FRIDAY NIGHT SCHEDULE:
• Kane’s hat trick: Kings vs. Blackhawks (2013 Western Conference Final) – 12 a.m. ET

More information about NBC Sports’ Hockey Week in America can be found here.

————

Sean Leahy is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @Sean_Leahy.

Notable playoff performances on NBCSN: Bishop, Maroon shine in Game 7

Leave a comment

Hockey Week in America continues Friday with some big-time individual playoff performances.

In a double-overtime thriller between these two Western Conference contenders, Patrick Kane and his series-clinching hat trick propelled Chicago to a 4-3 victory. In the Stanley Cup Final, the Blackhawks defeated the Bruins to capture the 2013 championship.

The late, great Dave Strader, Darren Pang, and Brian Engblom had the call from United Center in Chicago, Ill.

You can catch Bishop’s 52-save performance and other memorable individual playoff memories Friday on NBCSN beginning at 10 p.m. ET.

FRIDAY NIGHT SCHEDULE:
• Bishop’s 52-save effort: Stars vs. Blues (Round 2, Game 7, 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs) – 10 p.m. ET
• Kane’s hat trick: Kings vs. Blackhawks (2013 Western Conference Final) – 12 a.m. ET

More information about NBC Sports’ Hockey Week in America can be found here.

————

Sean Leahy is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @Sean_Leahy.

Notable playoff performances on NBCSN: Tavares leads Isles into Round 2

Leave a comment

Hockey Week in America continues Friday with some big-time individual playoff performances.

Trailing by one with less than a minute remaining in regulation with the extra attacker on the ice, Islanders captain John Tavares scored to tie the game at one to force overtime. In the second overtime period, Tavares scored the game-winner, leading the Islanders to a playoff series win in 2016 for the first time in 23 years.

Chris Cuthbert and Ray Ferraro called the matchup from Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y.

You can catch Tavares’ two-goal night and other memorable individual playoff performances Friday on NBCSN beginning at 8 p.m. ET.

FRIDAY NIGHT SCHEDULE:
• Tavares’ big night: Panthers vs. Islanders (Round 1, Game 6, 2016 Stanley Cup Playoffs) – 8 p.m. ET
• Bishop’s 52-save effort: Stars vs. Blues (Round 2, Game 7, 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs) – 10 p.m. ET
• Kane’s hat trick: Kings vs. Blackhawks (2013 Western Conference Final) – 12 a.m. ET

More information about NBC Sports’ Hockey Week in America can be found here.

————

Sean Leahy is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @Sean_Leahy.

Blues broadcaster ‘symptom free’ after self-quarantine

Longtime St. Louis Blues broadcaster John Kelly, jr. during the St. Louis Blues victory parade
Getty Images
Leave a comment

The quarantine strategy medical professionals have urged society to use have proved effective once again.

John Kelly, a broadcaster for the St. Louis Blues, tested positive for the COVID-19 virus and is now symptom free after being self-quarantined for 14 days.

The St. Louis Blues released the following statement earlier Friday.

The St. Louis Blues are confirming that play-by-play announcer John Kelly has tested positive for the COVID-19 virus.

John has been in self-quarantine since March 13. We are thrilled to report that John is now feeling strong and symptom free.

The health and safety of the entire Blues family remains our core focus during these unprecedented times. We wish John well as he continues his recovery at home.

Follow this NBC News live update thread for more on the coronavirus pandemic.


Scott Charles is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @ScottMCharles.