Western Conference quarterfinals
Nashville Predators 4, Ducks 3 (Nashville leads best-of-seven series, 2-1)
Eight keys to the game:
THE FACTS: Playing without second-leading goal scorer Bobby Ryan, who was suspended for two games after stomping on the foot of a Nashville player in Game 2, the Ducks couldn’t overcome a slow offensive start at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville and fell behind in the series.
THE STAT: The Ducks were outshot early and often. They didn’t take their first shot on goal until 9 ½ minutes had been played. They had a 25-5 disadvantage with four minutes remaining in the second period and finished with 16 shots on goal, compared to 37 for the Predators.
TURNING POINT: With the score tied, 3-3, and about 10 minutes left in the game, the puck took an unexpected ricochet as it slid along the boards and came right to Ducks defenseman Cam Fowler in the offensive zone. Fowler made a nice move around a Nashville defender, leaving him one-on-one with goalie Pekka Rinne. Fowler slowed up and faked a shot, briefly opening up the left side of the net, but Rinne got a piece of the puck and knocked it away. Less than a minute later, Mike Fisher scored the winning goal for the Predators.
HOT: Teemu Selanne continued his remarkable late-season run, scoring two goals 30 seconds apart late in the second period to tie the score, 2-2, and provide the Ducks some much-needed momentum heading into the third. The 40-year-old winger has four goals in three playoff games and 14 goals in his last 14 games overall.
NOT: The Ducks committed six more minor penalties, resulting in five power plays for the Predators, including one that led to the game's first goal. Anaheim has had to defend 16 power plays in the first three playoff games, allowing four goals.
GOOD MOVE: At the time it didn’t look like a bright move, but captain Ryan Getzlaf's fight with Fisher must have fired up the team because Selanne immediately followed with his two goals.
BAD MOVE: Getzlaf’s lazy pass in his defensive zone during the opening period went right to Jordin Tootoo of Nashville in the slot. Tootoo hit the post with his first attempt but jumped on the rebound and put it past goalie Ray Emery for a 2-0 lead.
NOTABLE: Selanne appeared in his 74th career playoff game with Ducks, setting a new franchise record previously held by Rob Niedermayer.
UP NEXT: Game 4, Wednesday in Nashville, 5:30 p.m. PT.