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game recap

Predators defeat Stars in Game 3 for Western series lead

Granlund goal breaks tie in third; Rinne makes 40 saves for Nashville

by Jeff Miller / Correspondent

Granlund's go-ahead goal in 3rd

NSH@DAL, Gm3: Granlund's long shot finds twine

R1, Gm3: Mikael Granlund spins and fires a shot that deflects off Ben Bishop's blocker and into the net, putting the Predators ahead

  • 01:08 •

DALLAS -- Mikael Granlund scored the tiebreaking goal with 8:19 remaining for the Nashville Predators in a 3-2 victory against the Dallas Stars in Game 3 of the Western Conference First Round at American Airlines Center on Monday.

The Predators lead the best-of-7 series 2-1. Game 4 is in Dallas Wednesday.

Pekka Rinne made 40 saves, and Rocco Grimaldi and Filip Forsberg also scored for the Predators.

"We blocked a lot of shots and the rebounds we gave up they didn't end up on their sticks," Rinne said. "So it was a good night."


[WATCH: All Predators vs. Stars Game 3 highlights | Complete series coverage]


Mats Zuccarello and Tyler Seguin scored and Ben Bishop made 25 saves for the Stars in their first home playoff game since May 11, 2016.

"You know, never get too high, never get too low," Stars coach Jim Montgomery said. "It's 2-1. I think we've been the better team two out of three games. If we keep playing like that, usually the hockey gods get back on your side."

Dallas went 0-for-3 on the power play, and is 1-for-13 for the series. Rinne made five saves when the Stars had a 5-on-3 power play for 1:29 during the second period.

"They forecheck hard and at the same time, when they turn pucks over, they try to get them to the net and have people in front of me," said Rinne, who won twice in Dallas during the regular season. "They got a bunch of shots during their power plays. But all in all, I still think we played well defensively."

Stars defenseman John Klingberg said of the 5-on-3 power play, "We could have had better chances. I think we were stressing up a little bit."

Video: NSH@DAL, Gm3: Rinne pushes across to rob Benn

Bishop finished second in the NHL during the regular season with a 1.98 goals-against average and led the League with a Stars record .934 save percentage. Monday was the first time that he allowed more than two goals since giving up four in a 5-4 win against the Arizona Coyotes on Feb. 4.

Granlund, acquired Feb. 25 in a trade from the Minnesota Wild, scored on a wrist shot from just inside the blue line along the right boards that sailed through traffic for the game-winner.

"One of those, you try to score, you can't get anything, and then all of a sudden one of those go in," said Granlund, who scored one goal in 16 regular-season games with the Predators.

Bishop said the goal was deflected in.

Grimaldi took an outlet pass from P.K. Subban just inside the offensive zone and made the score 1-0 at 4:29 of the second period on a 31-foot wrist shot from the right boards that caught Bishop under the right arm. Grimaldi, a five-year NHL veteran, had scored his first career playoff goal Saturday in the 2-1 overtime Nashville win.

Video: NSH@DAL, Gm3: Grimaldi beats Bishop to open scoring

Bishop said he got caught between trying to punch out the puck and corralling it.

"It's not the first bad goal I've given up in the playoffs and probably won't be the last one," Bishop said.

The Predators made it 2-0 at 14:35 of the second when Forsberg took a long flip pass from Nick Bonino and fought off defenseman Roman Polak on his way to the net to score.

The goal was the first of the series for the top Predators line of Forsberg (28 goals during the season), Viktor Arvidsson (a team-best 36) and Ryan Johansen (14).

Zuccarello pulled Dallas within 2-1 at 17:11 of the second period. He took a stretch pass from Klingberg, got past defenseman Ryan Ellis skating on net from the right boards and slid the puck between Rinne's pads.

Seguin tied the score at 2-2 at 8:15 of the third period on a one-timer from his right knee after Jamie Benn gained control of the puck following a scrum behind the net and made a backhand pass in front of the crease.

Video: NSH@DAL, Gm3: Seguin buries feed from Benn

Thirty-two seconds later, Rinne made a critical kick save on Benn.

"That save on Jamie Benn would put us up 3-2 and the roof probably comes off the AAC," Montgomery said.

Predators coach Peter Laviolette said, "That save was big, but I think it resembled his whole night."


They said it

"There are things that I think we can do better, so we'll take a look at that and prepare ourselves for Game 4." -- Predators coach Peter Laviolette

"I don't know if we're playing if it's not for our goalies and especially Ben. Our players got to pick him up for how many times he's picked us up, right?" -- Stars coach Jim Montgomery


Need to know

Teams that win Game 3 of a best-of-7 Stanley Cup Playoff series that was tied 1-1 have a series record of 212-100 (.679). … Dallas outshot Nashville 31-14 over the final two periods. … Stars forward Mattias Janmark was a late scratch with a lower-body injury. … Zuccarello has scored two goals in this series after playing only two regular-season games for Dallas after being acquired from the New York Rangers in a trade on Feb. 23 then breaking his arm in his Stars debut on Feb. 24.


What's next

Game 4 of the Western Conference First Round at American Airlines Center on Wednesday (8 p.m. ET; USA, SN, TVAS2, FS-SW, FS-TN)

Video: Rinne makes 40 saves as Predators win Game 3

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