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Nashville Predators 4, St. Louis Blues 3 (OT): Fat Tuesday Rally!

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It wasn’t a fun Fat Tuesday for a long time, but nine minutes of madness helped extend the party. Again. And Prince Filip ended the party in style.

St Louis Blues v Nashville Predators

Forty-eight minutes of nothing for the Nashville Predators gave way to 12 minutes of madness.

Trailing 3-0 in the third period, the Preds rallied to tie the game in regulation and force overtime, where Filip Forsberg drew a penalty shot and converted to give Nashville an improbable 4-3 victory.

Entering the game with a four-point lead over the third-place Blues, in addition to four games in hand, it was a good opportunity to create a little separation from St. Louis.

Jay Bouwmeester opened the scoring by firing one past Pekka Rinne on a delayed penalty call with 4:42 left in the first period. Nashville had several good chances in the latter half of the period, but ended the first 20 minutes looking at a 1-0 deficit.

A juicy rebound from Paul Statsny’s inital shot off a 2-on-1 came right to Alex Steen, who added to the Blues’ lead 3:17 into the second period.

Jaden Schwartz added a power play goal with 11 minutes to play in the second period. The Preds were outshot 16-3 in the second period, going more than nine minutes without a shot on goal to begin the period.

Calle Jarnkrok put the Preds on the board in the third period, putting back a rebound off a Mattias Ekholm shot 9:06 into the period.

The Preds pulled within one with 5:27 left as Austin Watson scored a shorthanded goal to pump more life into Bridgestone Arena. Then, after some confusion, Watson scored again on a pile up in front of Hutton. The refs had to look at it on the video monitor to confirm, but he definitely scored.

The final frenzy of regulation and overtime eventually led to Forsberg’s penalty shot—a smooth wrister over Hutton. Clean, neat, and efficient.

An incredible come-from-behind win by a team that looked lifeless for 50 minutes? We’ll take it.

Random Observations

  • This is not the same Carter Hutton that said “hey, thanks for having me guys” on an every-other-night basis two years ago. Something has clicked with the 32-year-old and he’s playing very well this year.
  • A very workman-like start for both teams, but that’s par for the course in this rivalry.
  • Yannick Weber throwing the body around quite a bit early on.
  • Letting Vladimir Tarasenko lurk near the slot, even somewhat unattended, is a very bad idea. Got away with it once, but not a good habit to have.
  • So, apparently there was a power play. I didn’t see it.
  • I like seeing Kevin Fiala trying to create behind the net. You definitely have to know where he is now at all times.
  • I don’t like seeing Rinne getting beaten like that on a shot he clearly saw, especially from a defenseman who had all of one goal on the season to his credit. On a delayed penalty, to boot.
  • Second power play (at least the first minute of it) was a big improvement over the first just in terms of movement and speed of movement. Two very good chances on that effort.
  • The Blues have just lulled the Preds to sleep and then, bang. 2-0, St. Louis. Energy really lacking in this period as the Second Period Nap appears to have reemerged.
  • The same defensive lapses that happened in Eastern Canada have found their way back to Nashville, it appears. Just not a good night overall.
  • With 10:34 left in the second period, the Preds are still looking for their first shot on goal in the frame. Let that sink in.
  • Might be time to chalk this one up to a Tuesday night stinker. There are of a couple of these every year, but not a good idea to have one against a team that’s still within shouting distance of your slim division lead.
  • Jarnkrok making things happen by being in front of the net. What a concept.
  • Is this going to be one of those games where everything looks bad for 48 minutes and golden for 12?
  • This third period is madness.
  • You kinda had to know Forsberg was going to bury that penalty shot when it was called.

Super Duper Three Stars of the Night

  1. Forsberg. Killer instinct on a night where he didn’t get many chances.
  2. Watson. Every now and then, true #grit will do wonders.
  3. Smith. It was his penalty that apparently set Peter Laviolette off, so...

Postgame Reaction

Peter Laviolette on what was said in the dressing room during the second intermission:

“We talked. I felt like I’ve yelled a couple of times in the last four games. We just talked...well, I guess I talked. It was more of a message of reality. We just didn’t play hard enough in the second period. We didn’t have enough energy. We didn’t do things we were capable of where we need to. As I’m talking, I could see them shaking their heads ‘yes,’ so they know that, too ... They’re an honest group in there. It’s not like you can go in there and say that and they’re like ‘what are you talking about, we played so hard in the second period.’ They know that we did not play to our capabilities. It was more of a conversation than anything else.”

Forsberg on the difference between the second and third periods:

We obviously dug ourselves a big hole against a good team, and now we see what happens when we don’t play, and we also see what happens when we do play. We’ll learn from both things for sure.

Sissons on the play that led to Watson’s shorthanded goal:

“We got a little aggressive on the penalty kill, (Ellis) made a great play throwing it to the back side and Watson scored a goal and it started building from there.”

Watson on the third period comeback:

“I don’t think there’s a recipe for that other than continuing to work, not getting discouraged or frustrated by the effort that we put out the first two periods.”

On rallying for a win against a division rival:

“The division’s so tight and (St. Louis) is playing really well. (Hutton’s) playing awesome for them and it looked like he was going to get them home there for a while. Anytime you can get a division opponent, especially one that’s up there in the division standings with you, it’s a huge win.”

Tweets of the Night

Game Extras