Nashville Predators complete sweep of Chicago Blackhawks

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Pekka Rinne and his Nashville Predators will seek to complete the sweep over Chicago with a win in Game 4 on Thursday.

Instead, they got demolished in a quick, fairly painful four game sweep, including two shutouts for the Predators and just three goals scored in total for Chicago. The Maple Leafs are in great shape to make it to their first second round in many, many years, but must get through their Game 5 tie tonight at 00:00 GMT in Washington and the odds are stacked against them with 888 Sport posting at 3.80, while the Capitals are favorites at 1.86.

After the 4-1 win in Game 4, fans gathered outside Bridgestone arena and took turns jumping up on a auto decorated with a Blackhawks logo.

The Predators pitched consecutive playoff shutouts in Chicago, the third National Hockey League team to do so.

The Predators lead the series 3-0 and have a chance to sweep the Blackhawks tonight during Game 4. Sissons fired a shot that bounced off the cage and appeared to end up in the area of Crawford's blocker before the puck came loose and rolled into the net.

Chicago scored just three goals in the series. I think sometimes when things are negative, you try to look at the bright side and try to look at some special things we did do this season, but at the same time, like Stan (Bowman) said, I'm sure there's going to have to be some moves made when you can't get it done in the playoffs or don't even come close. Their Second Round opponent will be determined by the outcome of the matchup between the Minnesota Wild and the St. Louis Blues. Toews had been held without a goal for 12 straight postseason games. I think they're a team that they capitalize well on mistakes and they can also create if you're not sharp in your game. "We just tried to put together a good game plan, tried to win a game and go on from there".

The thing is, though, it's tough to decide how objectively bad the Blackhawks were without considering how good the Predators are. They have championship-caliber talent over there.

In the playoffs, Johansen has six points (one goal, five assists) and Forsberg has five (two goals and three assists).

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This semifinal ensures one Central Division team will be playing for a spot in the Stanley Cup Finals, just not the teams expected in the first postseason series between these franchises.

There were no penalties in this period, but the Hawks stepped up their game and created more shots-on-goal than the Predators by 13-9.

When an official waved off the goal and called Alex Wenneberg for interfering with Pittsburgh goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury, the Penguins still had the lead and - even better - a power play.

MONTREAL - Mika Zibanejad was in the right place at the right time.

The Rangers grabbed a 3-2 lead in the best-of-seven series.

Jesper Fast and Brady Skjei also scored for NY.

N.Y. Rangers 3, (at) Montreal 2, OT: Mika Zibanejad scored at 14:22 of overtime, lifting the Rangers to a big win in their Eastern Conference quarterfinal series.

A late-season surge pushed Nashville over the finish line, but a loss in the regular-season finale at Winnipeg set up the Predators with what looked like a poor matchup on paper. Carey Price had 33 stops.