Do The Preds Have More Left In The Tank?

Garett KerberContributor IMarch 27, 2009

COLUMBUS, OH - MARCH 28: Head coach Barry Trotz  of the Nashville Predators signals the referee in his game against the Columbus Blue Jackets on March 28, 2008 at the Nationwide Arena in Columbus, Ohio. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

Two minutes and 38 seconds.

That's all it took for the Predators to turn a 2-0 deficit into a 3-2 advantage.

That's all it took when the Predators played hard, aggressive hockey and took advantage of San Jose's mistakes, sending the Sharks to only their 15th regulation loss this season.

That's all it took for Nashville fans to get excited about the possibility of the fifth-straight season of making the playoffs.

Truth be told, the Sharks have been struggling a bit down the stretch. However, a win against one of the top teams in the NHL, let alone the Western Conference, is simply huge.

In the win, the Preds showed they can play with the best and it's a good thing. The Predators play six of their next eight games against playoff teams, with the other two games against teams in the playoff hunt (OK, maybe not the Kings).

At this point, it's obvious that the Preds need to pick up wins to get in the playoffs. So let's assume they make it in. What is the key to a playoff run then? Health.

David Legwand is the latest injury to show up on the scratch sheet after he was hit in the face with a puck during practice. Jason Arnott is still a couple games away from a return, probably, and Ryan Jones, who I think has looked like he could be a solid player for the Preds, was scratched from the win over the Sharks.

In their absence, the unsung heros on the lower lines need to step up. Radek Bonk has been overall, a disappointment, but he played well in the the past game and that needs to continue for the Preds to get where they want to be.

Hang in the there Preds fans! This should be quite the finish