This is about the point that the Predators fabulous run to the 2017 Stanley Cup finals took off last year. The count in the series is the same – a 2-0 advantage for the second time in as many first rounds to begin the postseason, certainly an ideal situation to start. But the similarities end there.
Last year, the Preds stormed into Chicago and shut out the Blackhawks in Games 1 and 2, defeating their opponent by a combined 6-0 score before returning home to complete the first series sweep in franchise history. This time around, Nashville made use of their home-ice advantage to collect a pair of victories over the Colorado Avalanche, scoring 10 goals over two games while allowing six.
In 2017 the Preds got their hot start on the road and returned home to an energized crowd that helped them topple the Blackhawks. Now, Nashville must enter a hostile environment to face a team that has kept it close with the Predators thus far.
A 2-0 series lead is nice, but the Preds aren’t about to start looking at the possibly of a sweep, nor are they considering complacency. The series against Chicago last spring could have easily turned in Game 3, with the Predators needing overtime to prevail and take a stranglehold. The experiences gained then are likely to be utilized now, knowing the challenges will only become more difficult from this juncture.
There’s always room for improvement, and this instance is no different. But still, the Predators are up two games to none with a chance to make it three in due time.
(Courtesy Nashville Predators)