The Nashville Predators outstanding defense corps has been in the headlines almost every night during the Stanley Cup playoffs, but one member, undersized defender Ryan Ellis, has somehow managed to defer the spotlight to teammates PK Subban, Mattias Ekholm and Roman Josi. With questions about Ellis’ status for game 6 however, the spotlight burns brightly on him today.
With news this morning that Ellis did not join his team for the gameday skate and instead took an easy solo warmup, rumors were running rampant that the 26 year-old may not be healthy enough to compete in tonight’s game. One teammate though, fellow defender Matt Irwin, has no doubts about Ellis’ status:
There you have it, intrepid reporter Matt Irwin reporting for duty. If Irwin’s hunch is correct, Preds fans can breathe a huge sigh of relief. Removing Ellis from the team’s lineup in the biggest game of their season would be a big blow. The bearded blue liner has put up five goals and eight assists for 13 points in 21 games this postseason and has been a big part of the Preds’ strategy for shutting down Penguins top scorers like Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Phil Kessel.
Here’s to hoping he’s back in the lineup for tonight and we, as fans, get to continue watching his epic battles.