Instant Analysis: The No. 5 Seed

Sunday, 04.10.2011 / 3:40 PM / Nashville Predators Playoffs Coverage
By Jay Levin  - Nashville Predators
With Detroit's win over Chicago in today's afternoon game, the Preds are locked into the No. 5 seed in the 2011 playoffs. Finishing in the No. 5 seed was the highest placement the Preds could earn out of today's games and means a first round match up against the Anaheim Ducks.

The Ducks might be the hottest team in the Conference entering the playoffs and Corey Perry and Teemu Selanne might be the two most dangerous forwards in the NHL over the past two/three weeks. Still, the Preds matched up well with the Ducks during the regular season, winning three of the four games, including a 5-4 playoff-type battle just two weeks ago.

Injuries at the goaltending position for the Ducks mean former Preds netminder Dan Ellis has a good chance to open the series as the starter for Anaheim, bringing an interesting goaltending match-up between former teammates Ellis and Pekka Rinne. They shared goaltending duties for the Preds in 2008-09 and 2009-10.

If the Preds advance out of the first round, the No. 5 seed holds more upside for the second round than the other possible seeding options. With all the parity in the Conference and the talent laden teams at the bottom of the playoff seeding, the potential for first round upsets is significant --- Chicago has knocked out Vancouver the past two seasons and could match-up with the Canucks again this year; Phoenix will get a rematch with Detroit after last year’s seven game nail-biter in the Conference Quarterfinals; San Jose and LA will meet in a California showdown --- if two division winners go down in the first round, the winner of the #4/#5 series hosts a Division Semifinals match-up.


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STANDINGS

WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 z - ANA 82 54 20 8 266 209 116
2 y - COL 82 52 22 8 250 220 112
3 x - STL 82 52 23 7 248 191 111
4 x - SJS 82 51 22 9 249 200 111
5 x - CHI 82 46 21 15 267 220 107
6 x - LAK 82 46 28 8 206 174 100
7 x - MIN 82 43 27 12 207 206 98
8 x - DAL 82 40 31 11 235 228 91
9 PHX 82 37 30 15 216 231 89
10 NSH 82 38 32 12 216 242 88
11 WPG 82 37 35 10 227 237 84
12 VAN 82 36 35 11 196 223 83
13 CGY 82 35 40 7 209 241 77
14 EDM 82 29 44 9 203 270 67

STATS

2013-2014 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
S. Weber 79 23 33 -2 56
P. Hornqvist 76 22 31 1 53
C. Smith 79 24 28 16 52
M. Fisher 75 20 29 -4 49
R. Josi 72 13 27 -2 40
M. Cullen 77 10 29 4 39
C. Wilson 81 11 22 -1 33
N. Spaling 71 13 19 2 32
R. Ellis 80 6 21 9 27
G. Bourque 74 9 17 -5 26
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Hutton 20 11 4 .910 2.62
D. Dubnyk 11 18 3 .891 3.43

 
 

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