Nashville Predators (17-6-3, 3rd in west) at Anaheim Ducks (20-3-6, 1st in west)
This also could be called the Battle of November, as the Ducks and Preds earned more standings points in the month of November than any other team in the league. They were also the two best teams in terms of goal-differential per game for that month.
Ducks November: 10-2-3, 23 points, 3.67 GF/gm, 2.47 GA/gmBut aside from the prestige and the numbers, Nashville brings with it one commodity well-known to Anaheim fans, former captain Paul Kariya.
Preds November: 10-2-1, 21 points, 3.69 GF/gm, 2.38 GA/gm
Now I’m not going to bad-mouth Kariya for the way he left us in 2003, but I do think it is interesting how similar Kariya-and-Selanne from the old days resembles McDonald-and-Selanne from today. Really, McDonald is a Kariya-clone, both playing a small-man’s game, both skating like hellfire, both wearing a visor, and even the numbers 9 and 19 at times are tough to distinguish.
Only Teemu Knows the Difference
You know, I’ve personally never booed PK, even after he left. Frankly, he put up with so much ridicule being the brave face of the Mighty Ducks during the height of their hilarity that I couldn’t bring myself to boo the guy. No matter how PK up and left Anaheim, you gotta respect the legitimacy and attitude he brought while he was here. That’s why he is #2 on my Memorial Day Top 10 Mighty Ducks list.
Hey, but that’s just my opinion; boo away, Anaheim.
As a last side note: it is entirely possible that the Ducks will be facing their former call-up Michael Leighton in this game, as Vokoun is injured and Mason has played the last five for the Preds. If so, let’s hope Leighton remembers who is paying half his goddamn salary.
Prediction: Ducks 5, Predators 2. "Kariya-clone" McDonald with a pair, along with Selanne, Pahlsson, and Perry.