In sports, one bounce can be the difference between a win or a loss. Unfortunately, the Carolina Hurricanes found themselves on the bad end of the bounce as they dropped their first contest of the series to Nashville 5-4 in double overtime Friday evening in Nashville,Tennessee.
Nashville got things going first with a goal just 4:35 in from Ryan Ellis. Both teams traded chances before Sebastian Aho tied the game with his third goal in the playoffs unassisted at the 15:44 mark. The Predators took a 2-1 lead into the first intermission with a late foal from Filip Foresberg with just 25 seconds left on the clock.
The Captain Jordan Staal tied things up at 2-2 with just over 17 minutes left in the period. Vincent Trochek gave the Canes their first lead of the night with a goal that some might consider to be a goal of the year candidate, sending an absolute rocket into the top corner of the net. The power play goal was assisted by Aho and Andrei Scvechnikov. The 3-2 lead would be short lived as Nashville tied the game again this time at three all with a tip in front of the net Mikael Granlund. The score remained tied at three going back into the locker room for the second intermission.
The Predators pushed back in fron 4-3 with a tally from Ryan Johansen five minutes into the third period. With things just beginning to look slim for Carolina, Brett Pesche let a shot rip from the top that had eyes and found the net making the score 4-4 with just over three minutes left in regulation. Neither team would find success in the final three minutes sending the game into overtime.
Carolina came out as the clear aggressor during the first overtime period getting multiple chances to end the game from Brock McGinn and just missed out on making more playoff magic in his postseason career. With the score still tied at four, a second overtime period ensued. Each team nearly converted chances into the game winner before Nashville forward Matt Duchene controlled a bouncy puck, drove into the net sneaking the shot in for the game winner with 5:06 left in the second overtime cutting Carolina’s series lead to 2-1.
In spite of the loss, rookie goaltender Alex Nedeljkovic had another impressive outing saving 49 of the 54 shots faced. Aho and Dougie Hamilton led the Canes in the shot department with seven each.
Next Up: Game 4 – Sunday, May 23 – 2:30 PM (NBCSN)