Nashville Predators 3, Ottawa Senators 1: Bruised, But Not Beaten

The battle of battered battalions goes to the Preds.

Despite both teams having several players in the infirmary ward, Nashville and Ottawa were still required to play on Tuesday at Bridgestone Arena.

The Predators prevailed 3-1 to improve to 20-10-1 on the season.

Ottawa scored 26 seconds into the game as Zack Smith beat Pekka Rinne with a backhand on the game’s initial shot.

The Senators also went on the game’s first power play at the 5:25 mark, after Ryan Hartman went off for tripping. That power play, like so many others in Bridgestone Arena this year, failed.

Austin Watson evened things up with his sixth goal of the season on a redirection from Mattias Ekholm at the 15:38 mark of the first.

Ryan Ellis and Roman Josi combined on a give-and-go with Ellis firing a laser past Craig Anderson to give the Preds a 2-1 lead midway through the second period.

Craig Smith scored arguably one of the best goals of his career, stuffing his ninth goal of the year past Anderson 1:58 into the third to extend Nashville’s lead.

Random Observations

  • The injuries and scratches for the Preds and Sens might make for a pretty good team.
  • Tonight’s #FirstNHLGoalAllowedByThePreds candidate is Erik Burgdoerfer. And, to be honest, with that name, if he doesn’t get it, it’ll be a tad disappointing.
  • Alright, folks, let’s settle in...aaaaand it’s 1-0 Ottawa.
  • Very bad goal given up by Rinne. Can’t have that
  • Not good to have Calle Jarnkrok banged up early, either.
  • At least he’s back out there, which is the first positive so far.
  • Bad power play in Bridgestone Arena, what else is new? Well, it was Ottawa’s, at least.
  • The U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame class being announced during the stoppage is the best thing that has happened so far.
  • This period has been mostly blah, but getting out of it 1-1 after that start is a step forward.
  • Ryan Ellis breaks his stick on a slap shot attempt and the Senators get a chance the other way. Rinne and the end of the period keep it from being anything more than that.
  • Better stuff here in the second period so far.
  • Pekka Rinne...hurdler extraordinaire.
  • That was some kind of give-and-go between Ellis and Josi.
  • Good work by Johansen and Fiala to get a scoring chance, but it’s ruined by a double minor for high sticking. Fiala knew it right away and went to check on Brady Tkachuk after he hit him.
  • Good lord, Craig Smith, what a goal.
  • A power play? Well./

Three Stars of the Game

  1. Ellis. One of his best games of the year.
  2. Rinne. One bad shot doesn’t define his night.
  3. Smith. What a goal.

Tweets of the Night

Game video