The Nashville Predators jumped all over the Columbus Blue Jackets early, and held on through the final two periods for an important 5-2 win, which included the fastest four goals in franchise history and a monumental penalty kill, featuring the newly-returned Hal Gill.
As if that wasn't enough, you had Taylor Beck's first career NHL goal to celebrate, Rich Clune getting ejected for a late, high hit on Artem Anisimov, and a beatdown by Brandon Yip applied to Derek McKenzie. No matter what kind of hockey you like, there was something to enjoy tonight at Bridgestone Arena.
The win lifts the Preds to 13-13-6, good enough for 10th place in the West with Edmonton coming to town on Monday. Can they keep the momentum rolling through the duration of this homestand?
- Taylor Beck was very impressive tonight, not only on his goal but also on Legwand's, which began with Beck driving to the net and creating chaos. Only Colin Wilson attacks the net with the puck like we've seen Beck do these last few games, making me pretty hopeful about what he may be able to add to this team.
- So here's the question - when Patric Hornqvist is ready to play, who sits? Bobby Butler, who made a nice pass on Shea Weber's goal? Brandon Yip, whose fundamental numbers are terrible, but who brings energy and some toughness? Nick Spaling?
- Obviously we hoped that Hal Gill would be able to help the penalty kill, but WOW. According to the radio post-game show, Gill played 4:09 of the five minute shorthanded situation in the first period, holding down the fort and preventing Columbus from getting back in the game.
- Almost nobody saw what happened with Rich Clune when it happened, but once you look at the video... yikes. The guy does have a tendency to hit late sometimes, which has led to boarding calls in previous games.
- I'll see if I can get the advanced stats up tomorrow, it took forever to get out of downtown and by the time I got to Wendy's, the line for free Frosties took 20 minutes!