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...
Back on May 7, the Nashville Predators headed into Vancouver hoping to keep their playoff run alive, trying to fight back from a 3-1 series deficit against the heavily favored Canucks. History wasn't exactly on their side either. In their franchise history, the Preds had faced playoff elimination five times previously, and lost every single time.
After taking an early lead on a David Legwand shortie, Vancouver stormed back with two strikes to end the first period with a 2-1 lead, dominating the shot totals 12-5 and threatening to snuff out the Preds' season. Nashville couldn't muster much offense in the second, and for fans watching from Middle Tennessee, it was starting to feel like the end was near.
But this year was about breaking new ground.
In the final minute of that period, the hockey gods sent a sign that the Preds weren't finished quite yet. While under pressure from two Canucks behind the Vancouver goal, Legwand was just trying to chip the puck past Christian Ehroff and out to Joel Ward or Sergei Kostitsyn. Instead, it went up and over the Vancouver net, before being batted in by Canucks defenseman Alex Edler. Roberto Luongo never had a chance to stop it, and just like that, the game was tied.
A fluke? You betcha. But every team needs a few breaks along the way, and this came at a pivotal moment, sending the Preds into the locker room with a shot of confidence. They came out in the third with two quick goals by Joel Ward, and held on for a 4-3 win earning a chance to come back for one more game at Bridgestone Arena.
For the fans watching back home, that goal was like an 11th-hour reprieve...