Nashville Predators 0, New York Rangers 7: Few bright spots in drubbing

This was a game to forget.

The shorthanded Nashville Predators, now minus Roman Josi as well, headed east to face the New York Rangers.

While the Preds had an early flurry of chances against Jaroslav Halák, it was Filip Chytil who drew first blood, scoring past (or through) Kevin Lankinen at 2:37. Mika Zibanejad followed that up just under five minutes later with a second Rangers goal. Less than a minute after that, Tyler Motte scored to make it 3-0 at 8:14.

Tyson Barrie then hooked Vincent Trocheck sixteen seconds after that, sending the Rangers to the power play. Patrick Kane almost immediately interfered with Lankinen, putting the teams 4v4, but K’Andre Miller scored to end Lankinen’s night at 9:09.

While the teams were still playing 4v4, the Preds got caught putting five skaters on the ice, giving the Rangers a power play, and allowing a power-play goal to Artemi Panarin at 10:01 to make it 5-0 Rangers. Miller then scored his second of the night at 13:36.

The Preds were able to make it out of the first period without allowing any further goals, or even taking any further penalties, and headed into the second.

Tommy Novak was able to draw a tripping penalty at 5:35 of the second, and with Trocheck in the box the Preds got their first chance on the power play. While the Rangers were able to kill it off, the young guns got some good looks on the power play, forcing Halák to make some good saves.

The Preds then allowed their seventh goal, to Chris Kreider on a third-chance attempt, at 9:02. Seconds later Kane broke in on net, drawing a holding penalty from Tyson Barrie. Nashville was able to kill off the penalty, and the teams returned to even strength.

With 21 seconds left in the period, Cole Smith interfered with Zibanejad, putting the Rangers back on the power play. The Preds were able to kill it off, continuing after intermission, and even got a little bit of offense together during the period, but were ultimately shut out, 7-0, to finish the game.

Some heartwarming news from the night:

Some more good news (statistics are quoted from Natural Stat Trick):

  • Cody Glass, Philip Tomasino, and Matt Duchene were all above even in 5v5 expected goal share, with Glass in particular helping move the puck in the right direction.
  • Kiefer Sherwood led all players on both teams in individual expected goals at 5v5—how good the shots he personally took were—and trailed only the Rangers’ Chytil in all-situations ixG.
  • Sherwood, Tommy Novak, and Luke Evangelista played some high-event hockey that led to chances generated for the Preds (though also chances generated for the Rangers); they can take the credit for a lot of the Preds’ offense tonight, along with Kevin Gravel, Cal Foote, and Jordan Gross.
  • Yakov Trenin was once again great on the penalty kill. In the 2:57 of 4v5 time he played, the Rangers only managed .11 of an expected goal—about as much as the Preds’ shorthanded chance in that time./