Ducks rally to defeat Predators, even series at 1-1

Miller: Ondrej Kase's motor powers Ducks in comeback win

Miller: Ondrej Kase's motor powers Ducks in comeback win

Shots and hits can be inflated or undercounted by statisticians, but the Predators clearly carried the play in the second period, when they held the Ducks to four shots - but one of those was Perry's sharp-angled goal against Pekka Rinne, at 15:35, during a power play they gained when Nash-ville's Cody McLeod got an instigator penalty for fighting Ducks forward Jared Boll.

The Predators had tied it at 1-1 with 16:06 left in the third after Filip Forsberg pounced on a rebound from a Ryan Ellis shot to thread the puck through a crowded crease for the score. The Predators are 5-2 in their last 7 games playing on 1 days rest, 19-7 in their last 26 home games and 9-3 in their last 12 overall.

The Predators took a 2-0 lead when Anaheim goalie John Gibson lost track of the puck and allowed Canadian Neal to get in behind him and score into an empty cage.

But goals 99 seconds apart to finish the first period and start the second lifted the Ducks back into a 2-2 tie and provided the spark they needed, a spark Kase kept lit as the middle period progressed. Not only did the Predators kill off the penalty, they came back and eventually scored on a power play of their own to defeat the Ducks 2-1 on Tuesday night.

Nick Ritchie's tiebreaking goal at 17:07 of the second period was a wrister from the left faceoff circle that flew over Rinne's blocker into the net's roof.

Instead, Anaheim rallied from a two-goal or larger deficit to win for the fourth time this postseason, matching wins in Game 3 against Calgary in the first round, and Game 4 and Game 5 against Edmonton in the second round.

"I think he's done a good job". But with less than two minutes to play, the Ducks got a power play opportunity and cashed in as Sami Vatanen scored his first of the playoffs to cut the lead to one after 20 minutes.

Game 4 is set for Thursday in Nashville.

Still, U.S. head coach Jeff Blashill saw room for improvement before the final group game against Russian Federation on Tuesday.

"Tonight's response after getting down 2-0 is a character builder for our group", said Anaheim coach Randy Carlyle.

They opened Game 1 on Friday with sloth-like sluggishness, the Ducks performing in a manner that suggested they forgot the players are expected to take their pregame naps before arriving at the arena.

"Gibby gave us a chance".

"There's a lot of things to like but it's just one game", Boucher said.

The Nashville Predators are now two wins away from their first trip to the Stanley Cup finals.

The result of those moves was a Cup celebration and parade last summer, and they continue to pay dividends.

"We understand, they wait", Malkin said.

For better or worse, Kesler's attempt to get under the Predators' collective skin so far has been a success. J.G. Pageau scored at 14:32 of the first for Ottawa.

No matter. The Senators did what they've done repeatedly during their surprising run to the NHL's final four: they found a way. According to Sportsnet Stats, the team had won all seven games in which he registered a point at home in the postseason. "Whether it's overtime or third period or we're leading or we're trailing". I saw him on his back five, six times and he stood in and made the saves he's supposed to, and some that he shouldn't.

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