JOE BIDDLE: Preds fall behind

Nashville Predators
Jets Predators Hockey_1524885901553

Winnipeg Jets left wing Nikolaj Ehlers, left, of Denmark, celebrates with defenseman Tyler Myers (57) after they defeated the Nashville Predators in Game 1 of an NHL hockey second-round playoff series Friday, April 27, 2018, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

It was reported that country music star Carrie Underwood, wife of the Predators veteran Mike Fisher, had a $10,000 bet with Winnipeg pro wrestler Chris Jericho on the series. 

Carrie stood by her man and prior to the Predators-Winnipeg Jets series, it was thought to be a dead even series, to the point it was destined for Game 7. 

It didn’t even look close in Game 1 Friday night at Bridgestone Arena. 

It belonged to the Jets from the two National Anthems. 

Game 1 to the Jets. And how. It was a game that the Predators unleashed a wide margin of shots against Winnipeg only to lose, 4-1. 

It was a wake-up call for the Predators when Coach Peter Laviolette took goalie Pekka Rinne in the third period for backup Juuse Saros. It was 3-0 going into the final period. 

“I think there are things we can always do better,’’ Laviolette said. “Give them my choice if I’d take the number of shots or the game and I’d take the game.’’ 

The Predators got on the board when Kevin Fiala took a pass from Kyle Turris and finally found the net. That would be the lone goal from the Preds. 

The Predators once again got behind in the first period. Brandon Tanev scored with 5:09 left in the opening period. The period ended at 1-0, and the fact that the Predators out-shot the Jets with a 20-4 margin, but they 

still could not score. They never altered a score on three power plays in the game. 

The Jets, fresh off of disposing the Minnesota Wild in a 4-1 opening series, wasted no time to show on this night at least, they totally outplayed the Preds. 

Jets Paul Stastny scored on a rebound to give his team a 3-0 lead going into the final period. 

Jets goalie Connor Hellebuyck was on top of his game Friday night. He posted a career 47 saves. He was nothing short of spectacular in the net. 

The Predators launched 48 shots opposed to the Jets’ 19, all for naught. 

Laviolette needs to bury this series opener. I don’t think he has to tell his team anything. They are professionals and they know for certain they stunk up the ‘Stone on this night. 

We will see if they can correct the number of errors and leave Music City with a split of the first two games. 

As for Carrie Underwood, I think she can start a Go Fund Me account and scrape up the rest if needed under her living room couch. 

The Predators have until Sunday to right the wrongs and show they are better than they were Friday night. 

Joe Biddle is a WKRN.com Sports Columnist. He is also a member of the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame. Contact him at joebiddle11@gmail.com

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