The Nashville Predators, despite being starved for offensive production due to numerous key injuries, notched their third consecutive 4-1 win tonight in Anaheim. The Preds grabbed an early lead on a Jerred Smithson goal and then held on as the Ducks peppered them with shots, but Pekka Rinne turned aside 40 of 41 Anaheim attempts. Sergei Kostitsyn and Patric Hornqvist each tallied a goal and an assist, with both Kostitsyn and Shea Weber scoring empty-netters in the final seconds.
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First here's the video highlights and Predators vs Ducks boxscore:
- The Preds came out with some nice energy to open the game, but I'll be honest, I still don't see how Jerred Smithson's goal went in to open the scoring. As HardCorePredFan316 pointed out, though, the Hockey Gods owed Nashville one.
- After that, however, the Ducks started to drive the net aggressively and get some decent shot opportunities. David Legwand fired one off the post that came close to spotting them an early 2-0 lead, but it seemed like the Preds eased up a bit and applied the old road-game philosophy - try to keep 'em wide and melt the clock, but doing so led to Anaheim outshooting them pretty consistently the rest of the night.
- After killing off an early 2nd-period penalty to Shea Weber (Bobby Ryan has some sick moves), you've got to give a ton of credit to Sergei Kostitsyn for making a heads-up play to bank the puck into the net off of Patric Hornqvist. Jonas Hiller had SK74's angle covered, but the opportunity was there to deflect it behind him.
- It looks like Marek Svatos is getting more comfortable with his new teammates. He was able to set up for a few decent opportunities, and I just love the way he's well positioned to shoot when the puck comes his way.
- Full marks also go to the penalty killers for some outstanding work holding down the fort late in the 3rd. The Ducks pretty much dominated the 1st and 3rd periods (shots in those period were 28-13 for Anaheim, vs. just 13-11 for Anaheim in the 2nd).
- Ryan Suter was outstanding in the defensive end, putting out fires all over the place.
- The win ties Barry Trotz for 6th on the all-time list for wins with a single team at 431 with Montreal's Dick Irvin.
- There's no rest for the weary, as the Preds head over to Los Angeles for a tilt tomorrow night with the Kings, expect Anders Lindback to get the start in that one.
And for your advanced even-strength stats...
|Even Strength||Individual Totals||Team Totals While Player Is On Ice|
|Player||Pos||EV TOI||Shots||Shts Blkd||Missed Shts||Blocks||SOG For||SOG Ag||SOG +/-||Tot SF||Tot SA||Corsi|
Who is your Predator of the Game?
Sergei Kostitsyn (40 votes)
Pekka Rinne (119 votes)
Jerred Smithson (6 votes)
165 total votes