3. Team Rallies Around Johansen, 2017 Playoffs
We’ll always be left wondering what kind of a difference Ryan Johansen could’ve made if he wasn’t injured before the Nashville Predators reached the Stanley Cup Final. They certainly missed his impact in the lineup against the reigning Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh Penguins.
Johansen was fueling what was a magical and unexpected run through the 2017 postseason. He was just coming off his first full season with the Nashville Predators and was bringing instant returns to a team that always lacked an elite top line center.
In the opening round sweep heard around the world of the Chicago Blackhawks, Johansen played a role in getting his linemates involved with five assists and a goal as well.
The next series against the St. Louis Blues, Johansen would add another three points to his playoff campaign, with the big goal coming in Game 6 to eliminate the Blues. A two-point night as the Predators were heading to their first Western Conference Finals.
In a grueling and physical series against the Ducks, Johansen continued his strong postseason with four points in the first two games of the series.
The brutal, and downright scary, leg injury that Johansen took in Game 4 is a story you should go back and read hearing him describe the whole situation and having to get surgery.
The team rallied around Johansen to knock out the Ducks in six games, and maybe the most incredible part of this unfortunate injury is that Johansen actually finished the game before eventually having to get “emergency surgery”.