By Josh Cooper in Nashville
The Detroit Red Wings have fired a bevy of shots on the Nashville Predators net.
This has made some question the selection of the shots. Are they coming from the outside? Are they not great scoring chances because of their location? Detroit Coach Mike Babcock doesn't exactly see it either.
"All I can do is go off what I see, and I don't think that's the truth. So we've got to find a way to score on [Pekka Rinne]," Babcock said. "Our best rebounds and opportunities off second shots -- he catches everything, so we've got to keep it away from his glove. But I don't think we can tell our guys to stop shooting.
"But I think we've got to keep getting to the net as hard as we can. I'd like us to play the same way we did last game, with the exception of the two plays, one in our own zone and one off the rush. Just play that way."
The common refrain from a team that is down in a series is they need to get more traffic on the opposing goaltender. The Red Wings have been doing this with Rinne, but he has been stopping most shots - 81 of 84 in the last two games to be exact.
"We [had] bad one game and that game we won, that was Game 2,'' forward Henrik Zetterberg told MLive.com. "We've got a lot of believe in here. We're a good team. We just have to keep playing like we did last game and eventually we're going to score."Stanley Cup experience
Out of all the Predators only one has actually closed out Detroit in his career - defenceman Hal Gill. In Game 7 of the 2009 Stanley Cup Final, Gill's Pittsburgh Penguins won the Stanley Cup against Detroit.
The 6-foot-7 defenceman could return to the lineup as he mends from his "lower body" injury. He understands the importance of stemming any level of energy the Red Wings could bring.
"We have to be good at killing that momentum and realize when they start getting going we have to bolt it down and be strong that way," Gill said. "It's a challenge when you play against these guys. They have so much skill that they make plays. They're not just going to fire it at the net when there's no guy at the net."
The Predators are 1-0 in their franchise history in elimination games. This came last year against the Anaheim Ducks in a 4-2 victory. The Predators understand that the Red Wings are a little older and wiser than the Ducks, and that they have the ability to come back in a series. Detroit
almost came back from a 3-0 deficit against San Jose last season to beat the Sharks in the second round of their playoff matchup.
"Last year is last year and Detroit is a little bit more of a veteran team," Predators forward David Legwand said. "They're not just going to lay down and come here and throw their sticks in and call it a series. They're going to come out and battle and it's going to be a good hockey game. We have to be ready and come out and compete and play hard."Josh Cooper reports for the Tennessean. Follow him on Twitter @JoshuaCooper
Back to accessibility links