NHL playoffs: Predators complete sweep of Blackhawks

NHL playoffs: Predators complete sweep of Blackhawks
Predators goalie Pekka Rinne stops a shot by the Blackhawks during the third period Thursday night. (Mark Humphrey / Associated Press)

Roman Josi scored twice, Pekka Rinne made 30 saves and the Nashville Predators completed a surprising sweep of the top-seeded team in the Western Conference playoffs Thursday night with a 4-1 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks at Nashville, Tenn.

Colton Sissons also scored and Viktor Arvidsson added an empty-net goal as Nashville completed the franchise's first playoff sweep. Led by Rinne and a terrific defensive performance by their lines and defensive pairings, the Predators limited the high-scoring Blackhawks to only three goals in 13 periods.


Nashville will face the winner of the St. Louis Blues-Minnesota Wild series in the second round. The Blues have a 3-1 lead heading into Game 5 on Saturday at Minnesota.

Chicago is the first No. 1-seeded team to lose in the opening round since 2012, when the Kings knocked off the Vancouver Canucks on their way to the Stanley Cup title. Chicago's second consecutive first-round exit followed a regular season in which the Blackhawks went 50-23-9 and recorded 109 points, the second-highest total in franchise history.

at Edmonton 4, San Jose 3: David Desharnais scored late in the first overtime to lift the Oilers to the win, pushing the Sharks to the brink of elimination in the NHL playoffs.

Desharnais, in the slot, one-timed a Leon Draisaitl cross-ice pass past Sharks goaltender Martin Jones to cap an overtime session dominated by Edmonton.

The Oilers lead the Western Conference quarterfinal series 3-2 with Game 6 Saturday night in San Jose. The series winner takes on the Anaheim Ducks in Round 2.

at Pittsburgh 5, Columbus 2: Sidney Crosby and Scott Wilson scored 51 seconds apart in the third period, helping the Penguins eliminate the Blue Jackets.

Bryan Rust scored twice for Pittsburgh in the Game 5 win, Phil Kessel added his second of the playoffs and Marc-Andre Fleury finished with 49 saves. The defending Stanley Cup champions will face the winner of the Toronto Maple Leafs-Washington Capitals series in the conference semifinals starting next week.

William Karlsson and Boone Jenner scored for the Blue Jackets, but goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky stopped only 27 of 32 shots to finish a forgettable series.

New York Rangers 3, at Montreal 2: Mika Zibanejad scored at 14:22 of overtime to give the Rangers a 3-2 lead in a series that will resume Saturday at New York.

Chris Kreider's shot on a rush went off Alexei Emelin's stick right to Zibanejad for a shot into an open side.

Jesper Fast and Brady Skjei also scored for the Rangers. Artturi Lehkonen scored and set up a goal by Brendan Gallagher in the first period for Montreal.