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Nashville Predators 2, Calgary Flames 1: Saros, penalty kill hold lead

Roman Josi and Jusso Pärssinen scored for the Preds.

Calgary Flames v Nashville Predators Photo by John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images

The Nashville Predators snapped their losing streak tonight against the Calgary Flames, though a lot of the things that caused their recent struggles were still on display.

The Preds got out to a strong start, generating lots of traffic in front of Jacob Markström, and were rewarded for it when Roman Josi scored off a shot from the blue line with—again—traffic in front of the net, including Cody Glass ready to pounce on a rebound. The Flames pushed back a little, but the Preds were able to recover and get control back.

Juuso Pärssinen took a hooking penalty, but Saros and the penalty killers were able to handle it, and as Pärssinen was released from the box his team got the puck, managed a couple of shots, and set Pärssinen up for the Preds’ second goal. The teams traded a few more looks as the period went on, but the score held going into intermission.

The Flames made more of a concerted effort in the second period, managing to keep up sustained pressure in the zone and getting to some better areas than they’d managed in the first. Filip Forsberg had a few great chances in there,

With about four minutes remaining in the period, Chris Tanev—at the end of a very long shift—broke up a four-on-one with Yakov Trenin leading to keep the Flames’ deficit to two. Then, two minutes later, Nazem Kadri capitalized on a Ryan McDonagh turnover and Nikita Zadorov put the Flames on the board. 2-1 Preds.

Mikael Granlund almost got it back with under a minute left in the period, but Markström made a windmilling save to keep the puck out.

Early in the third period, Cole Smith took a tripping penalty, and 18 seconds later Tanner Jeannot cleared the puck straight over the glass for a lengthy Calgary 5v3. However, just seconds after that, Rasmus Andersson clipped Colton Sissons in the face with his stick. The Flames pressured furiously during their lengthened-then-abbreviated power play, and with nine seconds remaining Tyler Toffoli appeared to score.

A review overturned the goal, as having been scored with a distinct kicking motion, and the teams eventually returned to 5v5 without further score. Several minutes later, the Preds had just started to get some momentum going when Dante Fabbro tripped Dillon Dubé. Nashville was able to kill that one off and got a power play of their own a few moments later when Michael Stone took a holding penalty, but the Flames killed it off.

Matt Duchene missed a late chance to extend the Preds’ lead, but Saros was able to hold on for the rest of the period, including the period when Markström was pulled for the extra skater, for the win.