NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE – The Nashville Predators are so confident right now that not even having two goals in eight seconds waved off for goaltender interference can shake them.
Especially not on home ice.
Roman Josi scored a power-play goal with 2:43 left, and the Predators rallied to beat the Anaheim Ducks 2-1 Tuesday in their first-ever home game in the Western Conference finals.
Nashville grabbed a 2-1 lead in the series with its 10th straight home win in the postseason going back to last season. The Predators are the first NHL team to win 10 straight playoff games at home since Detroit in 1997-98.
Defenseman Mattias Ekholm said the team feels comfortable on home ice.
“That’s really it,” Ekholm said. “Our fans, I really didn’t think they could bring it to a new level, but I really thought they did tonight. It helps us so much, especially with those two goals.
“We have our fans standing up the whole third period literally and cheering us on. It gives us that extra boost and that extra energy that we needed.”
Filip Forsberg tied it up at 3:54 of the third as the Predators rallied for the win against an Anaheim team that has notched four comeback victories already when trailing by multiple goals this postseason.
Both goals were waved off within three minutes of Forsberg’s goal, but the hosts kept pressing with Josi scoring Nashville’s first power-play goal of the series for the win.
“Going out for the third, I think our guys stepped on the gas a little bit more,” Nashville coach Peter Laviolette said.
Ducks goalie John Gibson made 38 saves, and Corey Perry scored a power-play goal in the second period for Anaheim.
“Gibby played well for us,” Perry said. “He kept us in that game.”
Game 4 is Thursday in Nashville.
Forsberg tied it up with his third goal in as many games. When officials first waved off a would-be goal by Colton Sissons at 6:25 and then Ryan Johansen’s goal at 6:33, fans started tossing towels onto the ice.
Chris Wagner went to the box for high-sticking Nashville defenseman Ryan Ellis with 3:55 left in the Ducks’ offensive zone.
Nashville had been 0 of 11 on the power play in this series. Josi ended that drought with his wrister from the right circle off an assist from Viktor Arvidsson.
The Predators, 10-3 this postseason, have yet to lose consecutive games.
“We’re a confident team,” Josi said. “We know what we can do in the room . . . Nobody panicked. We knew we played a good game, and we had a lot of chances, a lot of shots. We need to play the same way, and they’re going to go in some time.”