The Predators hope to extend their historic season as the Jets look to land in the Western Conference Finals
It’s officially “win-or-go-home” for the Nashville Predators, who travel to Winnipeg for Game 6 of the Western Conference Finals trailing 3 games to 2. The Winnipeg Jets hope to finish off the Western Conference favorites by doing what no team in this series has yet to manage: winning two straight games.
Despite being outshot 40 – 32, the Jets forced Pekka Rinne to get pulled for the 3rd time in his 11 postseason starts after scoring four 2nd period goals in a matter of ten minutes. Kyle Connor led the way with his first two postseason scores and the Predators were unable to recover from the onslaught. The Jets outshot the Predators 9 – 2 in the inner slot in Game 5, proving that quality chances trump the Predators’ shot quantity. In a series highlighted by momentum swings, it seems that the Jets are in the pilot’s seat; as long as they can avoid a Game 7 in Nashville.
This series has been tough to predict, with each team grabbing wins on the opponent’s ice. The Predators defense will hope to tighten the screws and prevent center Mark Scheifele from scoring his 10th postseason goal. If the Jets can continue winning loose pucks and converting them into chances in the zone, right wing Blake Wheeler is sure to snag his 11th assist of the postseason. Nashville hopes their aggressive offense will yield goals against the stone-cold Connor Hellebuyck, who’s 7-3 this postseason with a GAA of 2.29. Pekka Rinne will hope to bounce back after another embarrassing loss, and the Vezina Trophy candidate is 4-0 after losses this postseason with a .949 save percentage. The Jets will be keen to finish this series at home in front of their home fans rather than return to the rowdy Bridgestone arena for a series-clinching game.
Despite the barrage of goals against his team, Nashville defenseman P.K. Subban has guaranteed a win in Winnipeg. “We’re gonna go to Winnipeg. We’re gonna win a game. We’re gonna come back here. It’s that simple.” Subban will be sure to hear a response from the Winnipeg fans, who have booed him at every opportunity this series. He made a similar promise last season in the Stanley Cup Final, which the Predators fulfilled shortly before losing two straight games and losing the Cup.
Thinking about Betting?
While the odds favor Winnipeg to close the series at -150, it seems Nashville at +130 are in prime position to keep this series interesting and force a Game 7. Winnipeg will need to close this series out now if they hope to get any rest before meeting the dangerous Las Vegas Golden Nights in the Western Conference Finals.