Here are three things to watch as the Predators prepare for Game 2 of the Western Conference final against the Anaheim Ducks on Sunday (7:30 p.m., NBC SN/102.5-FM):
A road less traveled
The Predators are the fifth team in the NHL's expansion era, which dates to 1968, to win Game 1 on the road in each of its first three playoff series, according to Elias Sports Bureau. Nashville's continued ability to seize home-ice advantage may be the most impressive aspect of its playoff run. Another win Sunday would place the Predators in a dominant position as the series transitions to Bridgestone Arena, where they have won nine consecutive home playoff games.
The Ducks are prone to taking penalties, leading the NHL with 55 minors during the playoffs. As a comparison, the Predators have taken 33 in one fewer game. Nashville had five fruitless power plays Friday, including a nearly 90-second two-man advantage. Anaheim's penalty kill, which began the Western Conference final at 69 percent, performed well in Game 1, but that's a potential weakness that Nashville should try to exploit.
Fifteen Predators players have scored this postseason, a franchise record. Conspicuous by his absence in that group is captain Mike Fisher, who has yet to register a point in the playoffs through 11 games. Fisher can positively impact a game without scoring, but Nashville needs him to contribute offensively. He also must improve in the faceoff department, where he lost 18 of 27 on Friday after winning 55.3 percent in his first 10 games.
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