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Predators Vs. Sharks Game 5 Preview: Thievery

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It is still a post-season of firsts. The longest Predators game ever ended with Nashville winning in OT for the first time on home ice...EVER! For those of you that attended, it was most epic, possibly top three games in Bridgestone Arena and maybe the City of Nashville. Now Nashville needs to accomplish another first...a post-season win against the Sharks IN San Jose.

Frederick Breedon/Getty Images

Here's some encouraging stats from Ryan Porth:

The San Jose Sharks

San Jose played an equally awesome game on Thursday night against the Nashville Predators. Some Fans of the Fin would say that the game should have ended with the Joe Pavelski non-goal that after further review has both fanbases scratching their heads.

Brent Burns is a beast, both in appearance and style of play. His unorthodox skating style makes what he does look effortless and his innate ability to find the seams in traffic to put the puck on net has led to some timely goals this post-season.

Up and down the lineup for the Sharks, speed and tenacity are evident alongside a deadly power play. The two penalties committed by Shea Weber in the 2nd and 3rd overtime periods had the Shark faithful salivating and those in Bridgestone Arena chewing off what was left of their fingernails. San Jose was constantly pushing and looked fresher on the ice, no doubt from their rest beating the Kings in 5 games, whereas Nashville came straight from an emotional Game 7 victory in Anaheim.

The pressure now rests with San Jose to hold serve yet again at the SAP Center and regain the series lead. Look for the Sharks to come out even harder and try to grind down the Predators momentum and put up a couple quick goals to bring the crowd to their feet.

The Nashville Predators

It was just another home win in front of a sellout crowd...right? Wrong. This was the longest game in Nashville Predators history and an emotionally exhausting finish to a great back-and-forth game from both teams. Playoff Colin Wilson keeps making grand entrances with the first goal of the game in the first minute of play.

Traffic in front of the net worked wonders on Thursday night as 3 of the 4 goals came from rebounds in the slot and hard-driving play. Mike Fisher was the beneficiary of these bounces and sealed the game at 1:03 a.m. Friday morning for a 4-3 Nashville win.

It'll be up to the Predators to keep this momentum going into San Jose and steal a game out there to go up 3-2 in the series. The Predators have never won out in San Jose in the playoffs, so the average sports fan would say they're due. It'll also be interesting to see if Laviolette inserts Mike Ribeiro back into the lineup with his scant playtime for Pontus Aberg on Thursday. As my daddy used to say, "Son, you just gotta ride the horse till she bucks ya." Words to live by.

Pertinent Information

Game 5, Saturday 9 P.M. Central on NBCSN...Pete Weber and Brent Petersen have the Radio Call on 102.5 the Game Nashville.