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PREDATORS SWEEP CHICAGO, ADVANCE TO SECOND ROUND OF STANLEY CUP PLAYOFFS

The Nashville Predators beat the Chicago Blackhawks 4-1 last night in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. It’s the first playoff sweep in franchise history for the Nashville Predators.

Nashville will face the winner of the St. Louis-Minnesota series in the second round. The Blues have a 3-1 lead heading into Game 5 tommorrow in Minnesota. Chicago became the first No. 1 seed to lose in the opening round since the Los Angeles Kings knocked off the Vancouver Canucks on their way to the Stanley Cup title in 2012. Chicago’s second straight first-round exit followed a regular season in which the Blackhawks went 50-23-9 and recorded 109 points, the second-highest total in franchise history.

It was the first time a No. 1 seed was swept in the first round since the NHL adopted its current playoff format in 1994. The Blackhawks had the best record in the Campbell Conference and were the Norris Division’s No. 1 seed in 1993 when they got swept by St. Louis in the opening round. That also was the last time the Blackhawks had been swept in a playoff series before Nashville’s dominant performance.

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