The Predators allowed more than three goals in this postseason for the first time in Sunday's 5-3 setback but can take solace in the fact that the next two games are at Bridgestone Arena, where they have won nine in a row in the playoffs since back-to-back defeats against Anaheim a year ago.
"I mean, he just blows my mind", Johansen said. You watch him and he's a guy that you love to have in [an opponent's] head and you hate to play against. "It just doesn't make sense how he plays the game", Johansen said. "I'm just trying to go out there and play hockey, and it sucks when you have to pull a stick out of your groin after every shift". Following their latest come-from-behind victory that earned a split on home ice, the Ducks visit the Nashville Predators on Tuesday night in Game 3 of the best-of-seven series. Later he took a high-sticking penalty on Kesler.
#NHLDucks' Ryan Kesler delivers a vicious elbow to the head of Ryan Johansen.
One of the match-ups in this series is Ryan Johansen of the Predators up against agitating veteran center Ryan Kesler of the Ducks.
Kesler would dish out an assist on Anaheim's first goal of the night. "In terms of how he plays a 200-foot game and it is a compliment when you get that kind of attention", Subban told the media.
"I play hard, he obviously doesn't like that", Kesler said about Johansen in a postgame interview.
When he has not gone head-to-head with Kesler, Johansen has been tremendously effective. "If that's Johansen for me, I've got to be better than him then".
Monday when the Predators returned to Nashville, head coach Peter Laviolette was repeatedly asked about Johansen's comments, what was happening on the ice, and what would happen, but he was only interested in talking about one thing- how well Johansen has played.