Tom Petty once sang it, and now the Nashville Predators are living it: “The waiting is the hardest part.” Since closing out their series with the St. Louis Blues last Sunday, the Preds have had to sit and wait to see which team they’ll be facing in the Western Conference Finals.
The Anaheim Ducks host the Edmonton Oilers Wednesday night in game seven of their series.
“We’ve got to just be patient and find out where we’re going and who we’re playing,” said Predators Head Coach Peter Laviolette. “[And] we’ll get the guys ready from there.”
The Predators players say they’ll be glued to the television Wednesday night as the Ducks and Oilers play their winner-take-all game seven. “[I plan to] have some dinner, and post up on the couch with some water and watch the game,” said Predators forward Ryan Johansen.
Goalie Pekka Rinne added: “[We’re] anxious to get back out there, and we’re anxious to know who we’re going to face, obviously it’s a big game."
Regardless of who their opponent will be, the Predators will have to play the first two games of the series on the road. Preds General Manager David Poile told a Nashville radio station on Wednesday that he’s “90 percent sure” that game one of the series will be Friday (with game two most likely on Sunday), and that games three and four will be in Nashville next Tuesday and Thursday, respectively.
The Predators held a full practice on Wednesday and the players appear to be loose and confident heading into the Conference Finals.
“It’s a different feeling,” said Rinne. “We’ve never been this far before, and it’s a great feeling.”