Fifty games into the season, and the Nashville Predators are the healthiest they’ve been all year.
The offense looked pretty healthy in the first period as well, as a three-goal outburst propelled the Preds to a 5-0 victory over the Los Angeles Kings.
Not long after killing a Los Angeles penalty, Ryan Johansen initially put the Preds up 1-0, but the Kings challenged for goaltender interference and were successful in wiping the goal out.
A Craig Smith power play goal opened the scoring not too long after the disallowed marker.
The high-octane first period continued with Filip Forsberg burying a power play goal in the latter half of the period, and Calle Jarnkrok made it a 3-0 lead in the first, whacking away at a loose puck until it slid past Jonathan Quick.
Colton Sissons added to the fun, scoring his fourth goal of the season off a feed from Miikka Salomaki in the second period.
A cornucopia of nonsense led to Nashville’s fifth goal, with Viktor Arvidsson getting it after initially having it waved off. The horn stopped play seconds later, and the goal was confirmed for the Preds’ fifth goal.
Pekka Rinne stopped all 19 shots he faced in recording his fifth shutout of the season.
- There’s no reason for a 7:30 p.m. start time. Ever. Especially when it means 30 extra minutes until Fil gets back on the ice.
- MUCH better energy to start this one than two nights ago.
- Still waiting for the NBC Sports broadcast team to do actual play-by-play instead of dissecting Mike Fisher’s return from every conceivable angle. I guess it means they’re talking about the Preds than usual, but come on.
- Meanwhile, a Kings power play. Pretty good kill, only one real chance in two minutes.
- A shot and a score by...JOEY? Wait, I’m gonna need confirmation of that. Yep. It happened. And then, it didn’t.
- Drew Doughty sold that goaltender interference call. He could have gotten out of the way. He just chose not to.
- Some semblance of justice as Smitty buries a power play goal to regive the Preds the lead they lost moments earlier.
- Not the best breakaway effort by Hartnell, but in fairness, he certainly couldn’t have expected it.
- Oh boy. 1:55 of a 5-on-3 power play coming. Though puck over glass is a dumb penalty, we’re not going to give it back.
- Welcome back, Fil. You’ve been missed. Props to Jonathan Quick for making the effort, but he wasn’t getting over to the right post in time to stop that shot.
- Full health, full throttle. The offense is clicking right now. A couple o’whacks by Calle and it’s 3-0. Maybe I’m wrong about the 7:30 starts.
- For my money, that’s the best opening 20 minutes this team has played this year. The real test is if the foot stays on the accelerator. For a team with such high aspirations, it’s now a must.
- Very nice work by Yannick Weber on that 2-on-1. Did not expect to type that sentence tonight, but here we are.
- I’d like to see the shots on goal, but NBC Sports’ refusal to make that a permanent fixture on its scorebug is frustrating to say the least. However, it’s been more than 10 minutes since LA had a shot on goal, so there’s that.
- They’re all getting in on the act. Glad to see Sissons get one there.
- Will Alex Iaffalo hear about that elbow on Fiala? Probably not. But he should.
- Not letting the Kings have anything in that period is a really good sign. In past games, it might be 4-2 after 40 minutes instead of 4-0, and that’s real progress.
- Full marks to Kopitar for trying to keep that shot out of the net, but it was all the way in for Arvy to add to the fun. This is kinda fun.
- In order for Ekholm to be unsportsmanlike, you’ve got to do something pretty rotten to him.
- Out of all the points scored in this game, only one came from a defenseman. Subban had an assist and that was it.
- A complete 60 minutes? Pretty much. One of the best games all around the Preds have played all season.
Super Duper Three Stars of the Game
- Johansen. Might be his best game of the year, and he should have had a goal to go along with three apples.
- Rinne. Looked good after some extended rest. Rested Rinne is very good Rinne.
- Forsberg. His return put a charge into everybody, and his importance to this team can’t be understated.
Tweets of the Night
new joey, brought to you by old mike.— Rachel K (@_RKH80) February 2, 2018
is nashville more well-known for nhl father's trips or bachelorette parties— generous billionaire (@grilledcube) February 2, 2018