Predators With Six Straight Wins

The Nashville Predators are way ahead of their expected schedule, holding a playoff spot in a loaded Western Conference. As they entered the season, the hope was for the Predators to show improvements and be an above-average team. Instead, the Predators have been one of the top teams in the league, and their recent stretch proves that.

Nashville has now won six straight games and is 8-0-2 in their last 10 games. What makes it even more impressive is the teams they beat, taking down impressive teams like the Vegas Golden Knights, Florida Panthers, Seattle Kraken, and San Jose Sharks. 

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Their next stretch won’t be any easier, taking on the Colorado Avalanche and Boston Bruins in two of their next three games, massive contests for the Western Conference playoff picture.

After struggling heading into the All-Star break, losing six of eight games, the Predators season looked over. According to ESPN, Predators coach Andrew Brunette had the following to say about a brutal loss before the deadline.

“We’re having trouble getting our mind around what’s important and that’s hockey,” Predators coach Andrew Brunette told reporters after that seven-goal loss to the Stars. “It’s not everything else that goes around hockey. It’s the game of hockey. I don’t know if we’re understanding the importance that our mind has to be in the game and it can’t be in our vacations.”

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While folding and not playing well could’ve been the easy thing to do for a young Predators team, they responded in the best possible way.

“It was a lot of change all at once. Player personnel, coaching, management. It was kind of the whole gamut,” Predators center Colton Sissons said. “But when you bring in good people and great coaches like Bruno and really high character guys like O’Reilly, [Gustav] Nyquist and [Luke] Schenn who have been leaders on other teams and have had great careers, you’re able to turn things around pretty quick.”

Is Winning in the Playoffs a Realistic Possibility?

According to The Athletic, the Predators have a 100% chance to make the playoffs but just a 1% chance to win the Stanley Cup. However, that doesn’t take away from what they did this season.

The Predators’ +26 goal differential proves that winning is a possibility this season. They have allowed just 210 goals, the second-fewest in the Central Division.

If Juuse Saros can keep up his play, tied for the third-best record in the NHL, the Predators should find themselves in a favourable position moving forward.

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Coming into the year, general manager Barry Trotz viewed last year as a retool, which allowed the Predators to have the season they’re currently having.

“I think what we did last year was sort of a retool,” Trotz said. “I felt it was really important. We had too many people that were comfortable. We knew we were going to have a real young team coming up. We’ve got a really good [AHL] team in Milwaukee. Obviously, on July 1 we picked up a couple of cultural pieces in O’Reilly, Nyquist and Schenn to really help our young guys.”

Outside of the young players, the veterans have stepped up to. There aren’t many, but none have been better than Roman Josi, who has 73 points and a +19 +/- this season.

“As someone who has been here for a long time, it’s a different team for sure,” said Josi, who has been with the club since 2011. “But the guys we brought in were quality people. That’s the first thing. It’s guys who’ve been leaders on teams. … I think you need that with a lot of young guys coming up. It made my job real easy this year. We have five or six guys who are leading this team. That’s a huge help.”

For the Predators, they’re ahead of schedule, and can continue to be in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.


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