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Preds outlast Blues to take 3-1 series lead

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A 31-goal scorer for the Predators last season, Neal ended a 10-game goal drought with his first of the postseason after tallying four times in each of the previous two seasons. "It's extremely hard, every team is extremely risky, so when you have a chance to close these things out you have to really step on their throat".

Defenseman Joel Edmundson gave St. Louis hope with his third goal of the playoffs on a one-timer from the left circle at 16:11. He owned the game, scoring his first playoff goal for the team and assisting in two more for the Preds, proving that that trading for him to help their playoff chances is definitely paying off.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Cody McLeod scored the game-winner early in the second period, and the Nashville Predators beat the St. Louis Blues 3-1 Sunday to grab a 2-1 lead in their Western Conference semifinal.

The Predators won 39 of 63 faceoffs Sunday, the second time in the series they dominated St. Louis in the circle.

Alexander Steen scored the Blues lone goal and Jake Allen made 31 saves.

It was Ellis' third postseason goal and marked his sixth straight playoff game with a point.

Yeo was upset about the call and said he didn't get an explanation.

"We knew that was going to be a challenge walking into this series", Blues coach Mike Yeo said, "and obviously that's a part of our game we're going to have to be better at". It's worked all series.

If the Predators win, the St. Louis mayor owes Barry a basket featuring a blues compilation album, an assortment of local barbecue rubs and sauces, a gooey butter cake and a Blues jersey.

The Oilers dominated in the second period, and they tied the score via goals by Anton Slepyshev and Connor McDavid. "I am pretty sure that is what the "C" is for, so the league can deal with them".

NOTES: Predators D P.K. Subban, a Toronto native, spent Thursday's day off at Busch Stadium watching the Blue Jays play the Cardinals in an interleague doubleheader. "Like you said, it's disappointing to be up halfway through the third there, but you have to stay out of the box". Instead, Nashville broke-the-ice.

Defensemen Ryan Ellis and Roman Josi also scored, and Colton Sissons added two assists. Neal finally scored his second this postseason intercepting the puck, spinning and hitting the top corner with a wrister. They'll have to wait for the late start thanks to National Hockey League scheduling.

The Blues pulled Allen with four minutes to go in the game. Ellis' eight points lead all Predators in the playoffs.

Pekka Rinne made 22 saves for the Predators. Game 3 presents a clean slate for the Caps' #70, while a return home could see Fleury take yet another step towards a potential Conn Smythe trophy (yeah, yeah, it's only the second round, but still).

Nashville's other goal further epitomized why it's 6-1 in this postseason.

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