Rookie left winger Gabriel Bourque led the Predators to a 3-2 win over the Detroit Red Wings despite having nerves about his first ever playoff appearance.
Nashville hosted Game 1 of the series with Detroit, which was filled with tons of physicality that resulted in 17 penalties and 34 penalty minutes.
The first period started violently, resulting in a roughing penalty for each team within the first three and a half minutes. Paul Gaustad took a shot from an impossible angle that banked off Brad Stuart's skate and past goalie Jimmy Howard to score the period's only goal.
Nashville had seven power play opportunities in the game, but Detroit's penalty killing units did their job well. The Red Wings overpowered the Preds' penalty killing lines twice, once on a power play goal by Henrik Zetterberg two and a half minutes into the second period after Brandon Yip was called for roughing and again near the end of the third period when Tomas Holmstrom shoveled in a rebound for the score.
The night, however, belonged to rookie Gabriel Bourque. Bourque scored first in the second period, deflecting a shot from the blue line from Matt Halischuk. His second goal came halfway through the third when he received a pass right in front of the net from Nick Spaling. Red Wing's coach Mike Babcock was impressed with the rookie's effort, calling his first goal of the night a "seeing eye" goal.
The game ended the same way it began: with a penalty. Nashville defenseman Shea Weber was whistled at the final horn for roughing Zetterberg by grabbing his head and slamming it into the glass. When asked what set him off, Weber simply stated, "It's the playoffs."
Game 2 of the series will be played Friday.