The Nashville Predators began their 1st round playoff struggle in April of 2004. Sunday night, they ended that struggle and won their first series in franchise history by a 4-2 score at Bridgestone Arena.
Teemu Selanne got the scoring started for the Anaheim Ducks in the first period when he just threw a wrap-around attempt past Pekka Rinne. Nashville would respond in the last minute of the 1st period when Nick Spaling scored on a shot in the slot.
In the 2nd period, the Preds came out flying and took the 2-1 lead early. J.P. Dumont made a great pass to Steve Sullivan, who deked out Ray Emery and put the puck past the goal line. However, Anaheim would respond later in the period on the power-play when Jason Blake put in his 3rd of the series. But Nashville would not be denied.
Nashville came out in the 3rd period with something to prove. Patric Hornqvist got a goal disallowed when he apparently made contact with the puck with a high stick on a tip in play. However, that wouldn't discourage the Preds. Jordin Tootoo would make a great charge towards the net and put it on goal. Spaling collected the rebound and put it top shelf past Emery.
The Preds would be tested, but they hung on. Fittingly enough, the longest tenured Predator put the game away on the empty netter. David Legwand.
There are no words to describe the emotion in Bridgestone Arena tonight. The Preds have finally made it to the 2nd round, and the Pred Nation faithful could not be happier. Now, the Preds await their 2nd round opponent.