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Predators hope to continue strong play away from home

Nashville begins playoffs at Anaheim 11-5-2 in past 18 road games

by Robby Stanley / NHL.com Correspondent

NASHVILLE -- The Nashville Predators traveled to California on Wednesday in advance of Game 1 of their Western Conference First Round series against the Anaheim Ducks, which begins at Honda Center on Friday (10:30 p.m. ET; NBCSN, FS-TN, PRIME, CBC, TVA Sports).

The Predators hope to parlay their success on the road in the second half of the regular season will translate to the Stanley Cup Playoffs in the first two games of the series against the Ducks. They finished 18-16-7 on the road, including 11-5-2 in their past 18 road games.

"I think that's huge," Predators forward Colton Sissons said. "Obviously it's a difficult task when somebody has home-ice advantage, but the way that we played on the road, especially in the second half here, we had a lot of confidence in away buildings. That'll be helpful to us for sure." 

Nashville has confidence it can make a deep playoff run despite being the underdog in the series.

Video: Nashville Predators 2015-16 season recap

"There was one time when one of our guys who does the stats work on our team, he had found 54 people picking [the series] and only three of them liked us," Predators coach Peter Laviolette said. "I'd say that's a favorite, but none of that means anything. You've got to go out and play the series." 

The Predators have several young players who will be making their playoff debuts, but most of the team remains from the loss to the Chicago Blackhawks in the first round last year. They are excited to get another shot at making a deep run.

"I think we have enough guys that have experience and know what it's like," Predators captain Shea Weber said. "It's awesome. The energy, the excitement, everyone just fighting for one thing. It's pretty awesome." 

Nashville will practice for the third time this week Thursday, making final preparations for the series.

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