Smith stopped all 22 shots he faced over the first two periods and then clamped down after yielding a third-period tally to the Predators' Colin Wilson, boosting the Coyotes to the franchise's first-ever conference semifinal series victory.
The victory came hours after NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman announced a tentative deal had been struck to sell the league-owned Phoenix franchise to a group headed by former San Jose Sharks Chief Executive Greg Jamison.
Pekka Rinne made 15 saves for Nashville.
Notable deaths of 2014 [PHOTOS]
UPI Sports Results for September 19, 2014