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Nashville Predators 4, Minnesota Wild 2: Four Preds Score to Cap Off Homestand

Monday night hockey is superior to Monday night football.

NHL: New York Islanders at Nashville Predators Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

The Predators squared off against the Minnesota Wild tonight on home ice. The Predators were quickly whistled for a penalty. Viktor Arvidsson would slowly skate to the penalty box for “interference,” but the Predators were successful on the penalty kill.

The Predators went on the power play with 15:53 remaining in the first after Jonas Brodin tripped Filip Forsberg. While the power play units did an excellent job cycling the puck, it was Craig Smith who put home a rebound from a P.K. Subban slap shot to open the scoring.

With 6:43 left in the first period, Ryan Johansen was whistled for interference and Minnesota returned to the power play. Matt Dumba got the goal to tie the game on the Johansen penalty. Smith drew a penalty in the closing seconds of the period and the Predators would enter the second period with a man advantage.

After hitting another post on the power play, the Predators committed another penalty to put Minnesota back on the power play. Right as Minnesota’s PP was expiring, Johansen fed a beautiful pass to Mattias Ekholm for Nashville’s second goal of the evening.

Zac Rinaldo and Matt Hendricks engaged in fisticuffs with 14:49 remaining in the second for some reason.

Kyle Turris was able to feed Filip Forsberg coming off the bench for a gorgeous breakaway goal at 12:02 of the second period. However, on a broken play in the Nashville zone, Mikko Koivu was able to bring the Wild within one goal at 15:03.

Kevin Fiala drew a penalty with 16:51 left in the third period, but the Predators were unable to capitalize on the man advantage.

Right after Pekka Rinne stoned Nino Neiderreiter on a breakaway, Miikka Salomaki was found guilty of a trip on Charlie Coyle with 2:17 remaining in the third period. Wild head coach Bruce Boudreau pulled Stalock and the Preds faced a 6-on-4 power play. After some excellent penalty killing, Salomaki exited the box after his penalty expired and sped down ice after a cleared puck to ice the game with an empty-netter.

Random Observations

  • I don’t think I’ve ever seen Wild backup Alex Stalock tend net.
  • Well, that was an early “penalty.”
  • Craig-nog time!!!
  • Two posts so far...ugh.
  • Make that three posts.
  • Mattias Ekholm!! What a beautiful goal by the beautiful blonde bearded defenseman!
  • Jordan Greenway is a large boy.
  • Sorry, Stalock. You’re not gonna stop Prince Fil on that breakaway. Or is it King Fil now?
  • ...You ok, P.K.?
  • Meanwhile in Rinne’s glove... there is a puck.
  • There’s lots of action along the boards tonight.
  • Pekka caught a puck, spun around, and then laughed about it.
  • I feel like Ekholm ices the puck less than any other Predator. I don’t have numbers but his clearing attempts always feel sensible and not desperate.
  • Rinne just stoned Nino Neiderreiter! Oh. My. Pekka!
  • Rinne almost had a goalie goal!!!!! AHHHH!!!!
  • I promise I can talk about things other than Pekka Rinne. Maybe.
  • Salty Salomaki!!! FROSTY TIME!!!

Super Duper Stars of the Game

  1. Filip Forsberg: Many folks are predicting that the Prince will exceed 40 goals this season. If he keeps playing like this...whoa. He’s got 4 goals and 2 assists and is on a 3-game point streak.
  2. Craig Smith: Smith has looked great alongside Turris to begin the season. He brings checking, speed, and a wicked shot.
  3. Mattias Ekholm: The tall Swedish rearguard leads the Predators’ d-men in points. He seems like he’s able to put the puck in the net at will.

Tweets of the Game

Game Video