Nashville Predators 1, Edmonton Oilers 5: Word of the Weekend: Squandered

Candice Ward-USA TODAY Sports

Nashville got shellacked by one of the worst teams in hockey, and now resides in the cellar of the Central division.

After squandering a Herculean effort by Eric Nystrom last time out, the Nashville Predators made their second stop in Alberta to take on the second worst team in hockey. Two games against two teams that are near rock bottom in the standings? Four points, easy.

Not so fast, my friend. That would work against the script that the Predators have been penning all season. The Edmonton Oilers did not look like a team with 36 points tonight and brought it early. After a quick back and forth of red lights between Justin Schultz and David Legwand, the Oilers took control of the game.

Random Observations

  • Taylor Beck finally got into the lineup, after spending two games watching from the press box. Of course, it took injuries to Viktor Stalberg and Matt Cullen to get him in. Beck had his miscues, like any rookie would, but he had some good chances and was on the positive side of the possession game. It would be good for him to stay in the lineup so he can keep at it.
  • It can only help the Predators to put Michael Del Zotto on the power play, so I don't know why he hasn't been on it more. Seems like a no-brainer that that was one of the reasons he was acquired.
  • Tonight was not a good night for crashing the net, apparently. Both Beck and Craig Smith had goals waived off, and both times Beck was right in the middle of it. It's like he's playing to stay in the lineup.
  • I saw a few gripes about the PPG that Ryan Smyth scored, as he also knocked down the goalie. Well, the puck was already crossing the goal line before any contact was made with Carter Hutton. Darn.
  • Mattias Ekholm only had 1:15 TOI tonight, and the Rexall faithful noticed as they went nuts when he came out at the end. My question, why even bother putting him out there in the first place with under 20 seconds left?
  • Finally, game threads can be a maniacal place, especially during games like tonight. This bullet was originally scheduled to have a tidbit about Colin Wilson. However, during some chatter about dinner, Jeremy Sargent made an awesome realization:
Screen_shot_2014-01-26_at_9
Screen_shot_2014-01-26_at_9

And so the hopes of the postseason are dwindling like the tail flame of a seriously depressed Charmander. It seemed as if the two-game stretch through Alberta would be a perfect place to stock some points, but instead they only pick up one. Now, they have to head to Winnipeg to play a Jets team that has been playing much better as of late. A Jets team that, with a win tonight against the Blackhawks, passed the Preds in points. That's right, for the moment your Nashville Predators are last in the Central division.

Boxscore - Game Summary - Event Summary - Fancy Stats

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