The Hicksville Hee Haws may have faltered against the Kings last night, but the Anaheim Schmucks had no chance against the little Country Bumpkins tonight. If you have no clue as to why we are referring the Predators to “Hicksville Hee Haws” and “Country Bumpkins”, don’t worry about it. The “sports writer” who affectionately named our team that is now dragging his knuckles back to Disneyland. Don’t worry, buddy; We miss Emilio Estevez, too.
Although they lost to the Kings last night, the Preds were bound and determined not to let that affect them tonight against the Schmucks -err, Ducks. Come on, did you really think the Preds would let sissy Perry get a win in his own arena? Yea, not so much. Either the Predators took the loss last night hard or the Ducks just are that bad, we aren’t sure (we’ll say the latter of the two), but the Predators came out for some roast duck tonight and left satisfied. With goalies from Wilson, Erat, and two from Craig Smith, there was no way the Ducks were going to stand a chance. The Predators are headed home with a win of the Ducks, 4-2. Here is a little summary of the game:
- David Legwand was missing from action tonight after a check last night, but both Kevin Klein and Sergei Kostitsyn hit the ice tonight. Kostitsyn did not see much ice time tonight, but that was mostly expected. Hopefully with making an appearance tonight, he will be 100% by Saturday. Leggy’s condition and return is still up in the air.
- First goal of the night was scored by the Honey Badger himself, Craig Smith with assists from Patric Hornqvist and Colin Wilson. Smith scored early (1:20) in the first, sliding the puck passed Jonas Hiller at the side of the net.
- Colin Wilson was happy with his assist and quickly put the Preds up 2-0 with assists from Craig Smith and Patric Hornqvist. The goal was originally awarded to Horny and, if it had been his goal, he would be the franchise leader of goals in consecutive games. Way to screw it up, Willy… (just kidding)!
- Anaheim was able to score within the last minute of the first, with Devante Smith-Pelly screening Pekka and slipping the puck passed him.
- Martin Erat sent the Preds up by three on what may have been the most interesting call of the night. During a power play for the Ducks, Marty wound up on a shorthand breakaway and Anaheim’s Lubmomir Visnovsky gave him a little push, so to say. The referees awarded Erat with a penalty shot, in which he was able to slip passed Hiller for the third Predators goal. If you watch the incident over again, you can see the call was sort of iffy at most. Of course, if it had been reversed on the Preds, we’d be saying “ref you suck”, too. However, the call was made and you can’t do anything about it at this point. We are just happy Erat isn’t pressured easily on penalty shots.
- Anaheim quickly responded with a goal from Beauchemin, but the two rivals left the second period 3-2 in favor of the Predators.
- Craig Smith sealed the game for the Predators at the 1:36 mark in the third, with assists from, yet again, Colin Wilson and Patric Hornqvist. It is clear that this lineup is a perfect match and it looks like the Preds have found their “3 Musketeers”.
- Also in Craig Smith news, with his performance in tonight’s game, Smith now leads in rookie points with 14. Can we say “Calder candidate”? If he continues to perform the way he has, it is clearly a no-brainer.
- Anaheim lead in shots tonight, but were only up by one. They lead the Predators 33 to 32.
- Again with the penalties, the Predators found themselves in the box more than Anaheim. Like the shots on goal, they were only up by one, but it’s still nothing to brag about. Luckily, Hornqvist did not find himself hanging out here tonight. Here are your penalty killers:
- Martin Erat – 1st 13:13 – Hi-Sticking
- Jordin Tootoo – 2nd 2:35 – Hi-Sticking
- Craig Smith – 2nd 11:33 – Hooking
- Jerred Smithson – 3rd 11:19 – Interference
- Ryan Suter – 3rd 15:06 – Holding