Pure Will Power
This one again seems simple, but it is the hardest to summon. No matter how finely trained we are, human nature is to never do things exactly as they were before. Try as we might, something always changes.
With both teams doing similar things well or doing something well that negates what the other does, it will all come down to who wants it more. That saying is so cliche, because everyone wants to win. It might be better to say the team that is willing to go the extra step to get what they want will win.
The Blues under Ken Hitchcock were a great example of that. The team wanted to win. They were told how to win. Too many nights, they did not have that will to go the extra mile though and that led to their downfall.
The Blues have played enough tough playoff games over the past couple years to know what they need to do. Knowing and doing are different though.
Lessons can be learned but not implemented. That’s why winning is so tough.
It is the team that can take everything they have done wrong, fix those issues and continue to do the things they did right that has the best chance. There are questions for both regarding this.
Will Nashville have any let down after appearing to take down the top seed so easily? Might St. Louis have used up too much energy defending for their lives in three of the five games?
Time will tell for all of that, but the team that can push through all the muck is going to be harder than hell to beat.
St. Louis clogs up the middle and keeps chances to the side. Can Nashville grind their way through that and put dangerous chances on net?
The Predators are a very fast team and get the puck out of their own zone quickly to spring attacks. Can the Blues slow them down and keep possession in the offensive zone enough? They cannot be one-and-done in terms of offensive threats in this series.
It’s up to the players to find that little bit extra within themselves. They are going to find themselves in situations that seem like they cannot be overcome. Each one must find a way.
The team that does that more often than not will find themselves with four wins at the end of this series.