The Predators future is continuing to look bright as they squeeze passed the newly formed Winnipeg Jets 3-4 tonight at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville.
The first half was a little iffy with the new kids calling the shots tonight with Chet Pickard, the newbie goal, failing to keep the Jets from scoring twice during the first period. Veteran Pekka Rinne was sent in the block the puck during the 2nd period and the older boys joined on the ice with Patric Hornqvist, Sergei Kostitsyn, and Martin Erat all scoring to send the Preds into the lead. Peks did, however, let one puck slip passed him. Pekka was also rushed off the ice due to a gash above his right eyebrow from a puck to the face mask, sending rookie goalie Pickard back into the game to finish.
Luckily, Pickard warmed up the home crowd and goal and deflected several shots at the goal during the remainder of the 2nd period and successfully kept the Jets from tying the game during the 3rd. He looked a little shaky and unsure at first, but managed to block 20 of 22 shots.
The Powerplay was used fairly well tonight as well. 3 of the 4 goals were made during powerplays, which must mean the Preds have been working on getting their act together during said plays.
In my opinion, the guys came out a little shaky in the first period. It seemed as if they were nervous to play in front of the home crowd (I mean, Nashville is a pretty intimidating arena to play). Pickard seemed slow and unsure, but showed some great goalie skills on his second return to the game. I was very glad to see Martin Erat back on the ice as well as Cal O’Reilly.
The next Preds home preseason game is this Wednesday against the Washington Capitals at 7PM.