The Nashville Predators called on first-round hero Kevin Fiala to fire up the home crowd before Game 6 of the Western Conference Second Round against the St. Louis Blues on Sunday.
Fiala, a forward who broke his left femur during Game 1 of the second round, emerged on crutches and wearing his Predators jersey over a shirt and tie after Lady Antebellum gave a stirring rendition of the "The Star-Spangled Banner." The sellout crowd at Bridgestone Arena cheered loudly and gave him a standing ovation as he waved a rally towel over his head.
Video: STL@NSH, Gm6: Lady Antebellum, Fiala excite the fans
A win in Game 6 would send the Predators to the Western Conference Final for the first time in their history.
Fiala's star has grown since he was injured during Nashville's 4-3 win at Scottrade Center on April 26. Fans have sent numerous get-well cards, and Country Music Hall of Famer Vince Gill wore a jersey with Fiala's No. 56 on the back while singing the national anthem with his daughters before Game 4 on Tuesday.
Fiala, 20, joined Tennessee Titans running back DeMarco Murray, PGA Tour golfer Brandt Snedeker and Nashville mayor Megan Barry as pre-playoff game hype people. The Predators had yet to lose a home playoff game entering Sunday.
Fiala scored two goals, including the overtime winner in Game 3, during the Predators' sweep of the Chicago Blackhawks in the first round.