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Preds Share Top Playoff Memories of Careers

Mike Fisher Talks Run to Cup Final in 2007, While Multiple Preds Recall Recent Triple OT Win Over Sharks

by John Glennon @glennonsports /

In a matter of days, the Predators will take to the ice for another pursuit of the Stanley Cup, prepared to craft another postseason full of memories.

Will there be more overtime classics? Thrilling rallies? Monumental upsets?

The Preds have produced their share of memorable moments while participating in nine of the last 12 postseasons.

Here are the top playoff memories of six Predators players:

Video: NSH@ANA, Gm7: Predators advance to second round

Player: Defenseman Ryan Ellis

Date: April 27, 2016

Outcome: Preds 2, Ducks 1

What it meant: It was the first Game Seven in franchise history for the Predators, who'd trailed in the series 3-2 before tying matters at Bridgestone Arena. On the road for the finale, the Preds used goals from Colin Wilson and Paul Gaustad, as well as a 36-save performance by Pekka Rinne, to advance to the Second Round.

Ellis comment: "Any time you win a series it's pretty exciting. My first year here we beat Detroit, but I think for me, the top moment would probably be winning in Anaheim in Game Seven.

"I think just the amount of work you put into the year and then into the playoffs... You see it pay off, I guess, and that's the exciting part. All the work you put in really worked out and you earned another chance in another series."

Player: Center Vernon Fiddler

Date: April 21, 2006

Outcome: Preds 4, Sharks 3

What it meant: Playing in just their second playoff series in franchise history, Nashville opened at home against San Jose. In front of a wildly enthusiastic crowd, Paul Kariya recorded four assists to help the Preds take a 1-0 lead in the series. It was the first playoff series for Fiddler, who played 40 games that season for Nashville.

Fiddler: "I remember the building was going nuts, crazy. It seemed like the roof was basically bouncing off the top of the building. I just remember being like, 'Oh, wow, we're playing for the Stanley Cup.' It was just one of those surreal moments, where you dream all your life of playing for the Stanley Cup and winning it, and then you're actually trying to win it."

Player: Center Mike Fisher

Date: May 19, 2007

Outcome: Senators 3, Sabres 2 (OT)

What it meant: In his seventh year in the League, Fisher helped the Senators reach the Stanley Cup Final for the first time. Ottawa's clincher - Game Five - was a thriller, as team captain Daniel Alfredsson scored 9:32 into overtime to end the series.

Fisher: "Just knowing you're going to compete for the Cup is a pretty cool feeling. It was pretty exciting. It ended so quickly. I remember the celebration afterward, in the locker room of the Buffalo arena. Guys were so fired up. I can remember them bringing in the (Eastern Conference champion trophy) and nobody touching it."

Video: SJS@NSH, Gm4: Fisher slides winner past Jones

Player: Center Ryan Johansen

Date: May 5, 2016

Outcome: Preds 4, Sharks 3 (3OT)

What it meant: In the longest game in franchise history, Mike Fisher scored midway through the third overtime - at 1:03 a.m. - to give the Predators a 4-3 win over San Jose. The victory tied the Second-Round series 2-2. Johansen was one of three exhausted Preds players who stumbled as they climbed over the boards to celebrate.

Johansen: "It was amazing, the work and effort that goes through six periods of hockey. You're just throwing everything on the line for that amount of time, and to get rewarded is pretty awesome. To be battling together and end up being successful in a game like that is always pretty special. I think me and (Filip Forsberg) had a little collision there trying to get out for the celebration."

Player: Defenseman Roman Josi

Date: May 5, 2016

Outcome: Preds 4, Sharks 3 (3OT)

What it meant: With the Preds trailing 3-2 late, it was James Neal who sent the contest into overtime by scoring with just 4:21 left in the third period. Mike Fisher provided the game-winner midway through the third overtime of the longest game in franchise history. It was the first home playoff overtime victory in franchise history as well.

Josi: "It was the longest game I've ever played and there were so many ups and downs. I remember coming out for the third overtime and it was like 12:30 in the morning, but the Lexus Lounge was just packed. People were yelling and we were like, 'Wow, this is amazing.' We won, too, so it was a great game and a great ending."

Player: Goalie Pekka Rinne

Date: April 20, 2012

Outcome: Preds 2, Red Wings 1

What it meant: The Red Wings had defeated the Predators in their two previous playoff series, but Nashville advanced to the Second Round by winning Game Five of this series. David Legwand scored a goal and posted an assist in the victory. Rinne allowed just nine goals in the five-game series, stopping 21 shots in the decisive contest in Nashville.

Rinne comment: "That was a great memory. Detroit still had players like [Nicklas] Lidstrom, [Henrik] Zetterberg, [Pavel] Datsyuk and [Tomas] Holmstrom… I remember at the end (of Game Five), just looking up at the clock to see how many seconds were left. It was obviously a great feeling when the buzzer finally went off."

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