We wanted Nashville? We got Nashville.
Thanks to their 5-0 win in game six over the Colorado Avalanche, the Nashville Predators have advanced to the second round of the 2018 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs where they will face our Winnipeg Jets.
Dates of games have yet to be confirmed, although it’s widely speculated that should both of the Eastern conference series that are still going on – both of which are in game six – end tonight, then it’s likely both the Jets and Predators as well as the San Jose Sharks / Vegas Golden Knights series start on Wednesday. If either goes to a game seven, the NHL may push the start of both series to Thursday.
With that in mind, we have a little more time to kill before we get back to hockey, so let’s look back at the season series between the Jets and Predators – one of the few season series that didn’t exactly go the Jets way…
November 20, 2017
Winnipeg – 3
Nashville – 5
A rough opening two games by the Jets had been forgotten about by this time as the club was 12-4-3 and ready to kick off a four game road trip. The Predators meanwhile also started the season off a bit rough but had managed to win six of their last seven games going into their first meeting with the Jets.
“The story of the game – at least in the middle frame – was the Jets repeated inability to properly exit out of the defensive zone which created turnovers and left Connor Hellebuyck high and dry multiple times.”
December 19, 2017
Winnipeg – 6
Nashville – 4
The Jets were coming off a split home and home series against the St. Louis Blues where one could have made the argument that they won five of the six periods played and were feeling pretty good about themselves. The Predators at this point had started to come out of their post-Stanley Cup appearance hangover and were playing some pretty good hockey themselves – boosted in part by recent acquisition Kyle Turris.
“After the game, many a fan and media member wondered out loud just how amazing a playoff series would be between these two teams.
There may not be enough heart medication in the world to help cope with such a series.”
February 27, 2018
Nashville – 6
Winnipeg – 5
The first game for both teams after the NHL trade deadline and both Winnipeg and Nashville get to show off their newest toys. Paul Stastny for Winnipeg and Ryan Hartman for Nashville both were looking to make instant impacts for their clubs which again met up with each other both enjoying win streaks over solid opposition.
“This entire game felt like game one of a playoff series didn’t it? Slow first period where it felt like the teams were feeling each other out a bit, crazy second period and a third that a bit more of a tight checking affair but still back and forth.”
March 13, 2018
Winnipeg – 1
Nashville – 3
The beat up and walking wounded Jets were at the end of a long six game road trip that started off well with three wins but quickly fell apart with an OT loss in Philly and a loss in regulation to Washington. Less than 24 hours after that loss in Washington, a beat up Jets team took on a Predators club that hadn’t lost in regulation in like a thousand games (number may be exaggerated).
“Fantastic tweet from our friends over at Arctic Ice Hockey shows you just how to keep this loss and the Jets struggles in proper perspective:”
81 – INJURED – 26
27 – INJURED – 29
85 – 18 – 52
09 – INJURED – 40
44 – INJURED
INJURED – 33
INJURED – 57
— Arctic Ice Hockey (@arcticicehockey) March 14, 2018
March 25, 2018
Nashville – 4
Winnipeg – 5 (SO)
With a chance to officially clinch a playoff spot, the scrappy Jets (this was the first game after that infamous weekend practice dust-up between Blake Wheeler and Ben Chiarot) – who came into the game having won four in a row – also found themselves with extra motivation to try and knock off Nashville – a team that had lost their last two games on the road – and gain some ground on them in a race for top spot in the Central Division.
“Any worries we may have had about the Jets offense a week or two ago may have been taken care of. There are still a few issues (Perreault not scoring, fourth line hasn’t chipped in much..) but it’s not just Laine, Ehlers and pray for one more somewhere else.”