The Predators will not only have the chance to clinch their first-ever berth in the Stanley Cup Finals tomorrow. Jonathan Bernier took over and gave up two goals (Nashville's third was an empty-netter) and stopped 16 shots in his first appearance in almost two weeks for the Ducks, who already were without 30-goal scorers Rickard Rakell and Patrick Eaves.
The Stanley Cup playoffs often make heroes out of lesser lights, and Aberg continues that legacy. The Nashville Predators have won 17 of their last 20 games when allowing two or less goals. Through it all, left winger Filip Forsberg has set the table.
Pontus Aberg drew back into the lineup and scored the winning goal just over midway through the third period for his first playoff goal, while Frederick Gaudreau played well defensively and had a winning record on faceoffs, going 10-4 in his first playoff match. He had to be taken off the ice for medical evaluation immediately after his celebration, but his teammates hung on to move one win away from playing for hockey's ultimate prize. "I lost my tooth, but it didn't hurt me".
I can't help but think that the rest gained by the Preds between rounds two and three have paid off in these circumstances.
Nothing appeared illegal about Manson's contact with either Nashville center, but the Predators have been frustrated by Anaheim's hard-nosed approach to hockey.
The 23-year-old Swede has only one goal in his 15 games of regular-season National Hockey League experience, but Nashville's injuries thrust him into a key role alongside Forsberg on its top line. Aberg had two points in 15 regular-season games for the Predators, and has two points (1 G, 1 A) in nine playoff contests. Gibson said after the game he would play in Game 6, but coach Randy Carlyle was more cautious when the team arrived late Sunday afternoon in Nashville, saying Gibson would be reevaluated in the morning.
Man U's Jose Mourinho makes history with Europa League win
We came here with one option - to win the trophy that the club had never won and we did it so we are happy. Manchester United beat Ajax 2-0 in Stockholm on Wednesday to win the Europa League for the first time.
But the Western Conference final is taking the battle of attrition to another level.
"I thought we had energy coming out, and it deteriorated throughout the game", captain Ryan Getzlaf said.
Poile says rapid diagnosis and treatment are critical to prevent complications and Johansen's symptoms began soon after Game 4.
"I like our first pass, I didn't like our second pass", Carlyle said. "If we win, we're in the (Cup Final)". We've got a job to do tonight. So that gives us a lot of confidence in his abilities.
For Nashville, they need to draw on the level of desperation they showed in game five and feed off the Bridgestone Arena crowd.
The Ducks held a brief 1-0 lead in Game 5 when Chris Wagner scored in the second period. The team has said Johansen won't return during the playoffs but hasn't been definitive about Fisher.