USA Today’s Kevin Allen is one of many writing about hockey mad Nashville as the Predators continue their quest to hoist the Stanley Cup. Qualifying for its first conference final in franchise history, the organization that once sweated out season tickets find itself one of the hottest draws in town. From Allen:
Ten years ago, people were holding rallies to save the franchise, and now the Predators are the hottest ticket in town. On eBay on Thursday, someone was selling two tickets for Game 4, 15 rows from the Plexiglass, for $10,000.
“When they started winning, everyone went crazy,” said fan Dan Harrell, a retiree and a Nashville-area resident since 1967.
Allen adds that the Predators dominate talk radio, and have brought a unique angle to the sport, showing that the game can truly catch on in a non-traditional hockey market. Additionally, the National Anthem has become its own spectacle, with different stars taking their turns singing while the opportunity to smash a car with the colors of opposing playoff teams have become a favorite.
The Tennessean’s Jason Gonzalez caught up with the fan who heaved a skinned duck onto the ice after Nashville notched the game winning goal Tuesday evening. Sure he would be thrown out, the duck landed on the ice without a security guard batting an eye.
- ESPN’s Andrew Knoll writes that the Predators speed certainly has the Ducks on their heels. And according to former star Bernie Nicholls, he doesn’t think the Ducks can handle it. Knoll reports that as the series continues on, it favors Nashville and Nicholls believes that the Predators have the speed and tenacity that propelled the Pittsburgh Penguins to a Stanley Cup. Knoll warns, however, that the Ducks have the propensity to storm back after being down in a series. Anaheim Left Wing Jakob Silfverberg believes that success will follow if the Ducks show “more confidence” in their game.