Saturday's big 4-3 win over Vancouver was one of the more unexpected outcomes in a single game in this year's playoffs season. Joel Ward is on a run like he has never seen in his career and is tied for the most goals in the playoffs with seven, and has 12 points which is one behind leaders, Martin St. Louis and Ryan Kesler.
One person who was not surprised with the win was Coach Barry Trotz who said after game four "I've seen it. I could give you 'coach talk' and say 'we're never out of it,' but I've seen it all year. I've seen it when our backs are against the wall. I've seen it in the playoffs. As our staff calls it, we've been on 'death's doorstep' a couple of times."
"In the Anaheim series we were there and found a way to come back and win. In Vancouver, we were there. We find ways. We've dug ourselves a hole, but we've been in a few holes this year. This group has been doing it all year. All I can say is that we have history with that this year, and with this group. It is a special group for resiliency and backbone."
He finally convinced the team to believe too. Trotz said that the team really "bought in" between the first and second periods and it showed on the ice as the Preds started playing with more confidence and cut down on the mistakes.
The Canucks are now 1-4 in elimination games this year after letting Chicago back in the round one series with three wins after having them down 3-0.
After the game, Pekka Rinne said "This is the biggest game so far for us, probably in Preds history." At this point, every game is the biggest. He went on to comment on the Preds first elimination game win, "Mentally is probably the biggest thing for this organization and us players."
One of the real oddities of one of the best post game pressers ever by Trotz was him quoting John Tortella saying "safe is death." That is so far from the "Predator way" that it was hard to believe.
So whatever it takes. Game six is at the Bridgestone Arena at 7 p.m. tonight.
Game Five - Predators Canucks Round-Up...
Here is our game story from Saturday night as well as postgame video from Barry Trotz and Joel Ward.
Josh Cooper had his game story, notes column, and postgame ponderings.
David Boclair has his game story and notes column at The City Paper.
From the blog world reports come from Amanda DiPaolo, Mark Willoughby, Sam Page, Jeremy Gover, Paul McCann, Predatorial, Fang Finger Fever, and Hockey Night in Nashville.
Adrian Dater's three stars at Sports Illustrated had Joel Ward first, Mike Fisher second, and Ryan Kesler in third.
Pekka Rinne called the win the biggest in team history.
The other side of the story comes from all the fine Media Outlets listed in the right column.
Here are the game highlights from NHL.com.
Buddy Oakes for PredsOnTheGlass