Blues 4, Predators 3 (SO): Missed Chances Cost Nashville

Frederick Breedon

It's no surprise to see today's game go to a shootout, as three of the six meetings between these two teams last season ended up doing so.

The Nashville Predators had a 3-2 lead heading into the 3rd period thanks to a goal and two assists from Patric Hornqvist, but the persistent Blues came back thanks to a goal by Alex Pietrangelo, before ultimately taking the shootout decision handily. The Preds had some good chances to put the game away in the third, but couldn't close the deal and fell to 0-0-2 on the season, as they jet up to Minnesota for a game tomorrow night.

Random Observations:

  • After giving Scott Hannan his props on Saturday, I have to say I didn't like his play on the first St. Louis goal, he gave Vladimir Tarasenko way too much space and dropped down for a block early, allowing the Blues' rookie to step towards the middle and use Hannan as a bit of a screen on his shot.
  • A boarding penalty is not the way to make a first impression, Richard Clune.
  • How impressive was Patric Hornqvist's goal to make it 3-2 in the 2nd, though? That goal chased Jaroslav Halak from the game, and showed the kind of savvy only seen by guys who spend a lot of time right around the net. He knew that both the goalie and defenseman were expected him to pass the puck across the crease instead of shoot.
  • Shea Weber's showing some feistiness here in the early days of the season, and that can set a tone for later on. David Perron took a tumble behind the net after hanging too close to Pekka Rinne at one stoppage, thanks to a Weber shove.
  • St. Louis has themselves one helluva player in Tarasenko. It's not just the speed and skill that strike you, but the confidence he has to attack the defense is remarkable. Back in the 80's I remember Hubie Brown describing Isaiah Thomas as having "the guts of a burglar", and that rings true with Tarasenko.
  • Sergei Kostitsyn had a couple open-net chances that he couldn't quite pull the trigger on, and when you toss in some early shots that rang off the post, this one didn't have to be so tight in the later stages.
  • Craig Smith had an awful game tonight, unable to handle passes cleanly, including one from David Legwand in the OT which should have led to a good wrist shot. Even a chance to go first in the shootout didnt pan out.
  • Overall, the Predators were outshot mightily by St. Louis (no surprise there, if you read our preview), leaving Pekka Rinne no margin for error.
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