The 2017 NHL Stanley Cup Final starts on Monday with Game 1 between the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Nashville Predators at PPG Paints Arena. Here are some notes going into the Final plus my prediction for the Stanley Cup Champion and winner of the Conn Smythe Trophy.
Stanley Cup Final Notes & Stats:
- The Penguins are the first team to make back-to-back Stanley Cup Finals since they did it in 2008 and 2009, along with the Detroit Red Wings. If they can beat the Predators, they would become the first repeat champions since the Red Wings in 1997 and 1998.
- This marks the first time the Predators franchise has reached the Stanley Cup Final.
- Nashville is 7-1 at home in the playoffs. Their only loss came in Game 4 of the Conference Finals Finals against the Anaheim Ducks. The score was 3-2 Ducks in overtime.
- The Predators have yet to face an elimination game in the 2017 playoffs.
- Captain Mike Fisher is the only Predators player in this postseason run who has ever appeared in a Stanley Cup Final before. He played for Ottawa in 2007 in a five-game loss to Anaheim.
- The Predators became the 16th different team to reach the Stanley Cup Final since the 2005-06 lockout.
- Nashville is the third bottom seed to make a Stanley Cup Final since 2006. The Los Angeles Kings won the Cup in 2012 while the Edmonton Oilers lost to the Carolina Hurricanes in Game 7 in the 2006 Final.
- The 2017 Stanley Cup Final will be the first in NHL history with two American-born head coaches, Peter Laviolette (Predators) and Mike Sullivan (Penguins). Both coaches are from Massachusetts and both spent time coaching in the Boston Bruins system.
- This is Laviolette’s third trip to the final with three different teams (Carolina, Philadelphia, Nashville), something only Dick Irvin (Chicago, Toronto, Montreal), Scotty Bowman (St. Louis, Montreal, Pittsburgh, Detroit) and Mike Keenan (Philadelphia, Chicago, N.Y. Rangers) have accomplished.
- It’s been 24 years since Montreal became the last Canadian-based club to win the Stanley Cup but we Canadians should stop worrying about this drought. Nashville has 12 Canadian-born players to Pittsburgh’s 10. So the Cup is still coming home.
1. Canadians need to get off the "Bring Home The Cup" soapbox. Teams consist of a majority of Canadian players…
— Stephen Dyrgas (@stephendyrgas) May 26, 2017
My Prediction for the Stanley Cup Final:
M2 Pittsburgh Penguins vs WC2 Nashville Predators – Nashville in 7
Conn Smythe Winner:
— Sportsnet Stats (@SNstats) May 28, 2017
- 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs Bracket and Schedule | NHL.com
- Stanley Cup Final Preview: Nashville Predators vs. Pittsburgh Penguins | Sportsnet
- Stanley Cup Final: 10 things to consider | CBC Sports
- The Biggest X-Factors in the 2017 Stanley Cup Final | Bleacher Report
- Stanley Cup steals show at Final Media Day | NHL.com
- Scotty Bowman: Winning back-to-back Stanley Cups ‘tougher to do now’ | CBC Sports
- Predators win 2017 Stanley Cup Final in EA Sports video game simulation | NHL.com