Facing the first Game 7 in franchise history, the Nashville Predators answered the bell early and held on late to advance to the second round of the 2016 NHL playoffs.
Nashville stunned the Anaheim Ducks at home, eliminating the Pacific Division champions with a 2-1 win in Game 7 on Wednesday.
The Ducks actually made some franchise history early in the first period, lasting more than five minutes into a Game 7 without falling behind their opponents.
Ducks gave up opening goal in opening 5 min in Game 7 versus Detroit (2013), LA (2014) and Chicago (2015). No goals tonight in opening 5— Pierre LeBrun (@Real_ESPNLeBrun) April 28, 2016
However, the Ducks eventually gave up the opening goal for their fourth straight Game 7. Mike Fisher led a Predators rush through two defenders, leaving the puck for Colin Wilson to shoot past Ducks goalie Frederik Andersen on the backhand. It was Wilson's team-leading fifth point of the playoffs.
Anaheim killed off a two-man Predators advantage to gain some momentum, but Nashville grabbed it right back seconds later when center Paul Gaustad scored to make it 2-0.
The Predators tried to lock the game down in the second period, resorting to high pressure in the defensive and neutral zones. Midway through the second period, the Predators only had two shot attempts in medium and high danger areas.
Anaheim began the third period on a power play and immediately cashed in with a goal from Ryan Kesler. Penalty troubles dogged both teams late, as the Predators fell into danger only for Ryan Getzlaf to get penalized for a Preds power play with six minutes left in regulation. The holes were too big for the Ducks to climb out of, and Nashville advanced to face the San Jose Sharks in the second round.