Earlier this summer we reviewed the Top 10 Moments of the Regular Season, and now seems a fine time to look back at the team's playoff run...
Coming into this playoff run Nashville Predators fans didn't exactly have a history of success to rely upon, and the team's 4-3 victory in Game 3 against Anaheim was disturbingly close, with the Ducks coming back to tie it after the Predators dominated the early stages. In previous years, we had to worry about whether key players would be able to recover from injury in time to contribute, or whether a guy like Radulov could stop running opponents (or teammates) into the glass.
That's why it came as a welcome shot in the arm when Anaheim GM Bob Murray came out in the press complaining that the Preds were diving, and sarcastically musing that his Ducks needed to do a better job of that themselves:
"I'd never thought I'd say this to my hockey team. We've got to start diving because it's working. It is working. They're getting power plays because of the diving. I can go through the list of players. You already know who they are. You've seen them. It's ridiculous."
Of course, one could say that any deficiency the Ducks had on this front was Murray's own fault, for trading away the NHL's top diver, Maxim Lapierre, to Vancouver at the trading deadline. That, and the fact that the Ducks are perennially among the league's most-penalized teams made Murray's claims all the more laughable.
When the leader of a skate-stomping, slew-footing bunch of cheap-shot artists starts saying that the referees are the root of the problem, you know that team has lost its focus. At that moment, Predators fans could really start feeling that their team had the upper hand in this series.