Preds defeat Canucks in OT Stunner

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Image Source: NHL Public Relations

Overtime. More specifically, 3-on-3 overtime. Nashville’s nagging nemesis. Since it was introduced last season, the Predators have had a difficult time finding success after regulation ends. But last night, Calle Jarnkrok decided to change that 0-3 OT record (not including SO losses) to 1-3… with 1.5 seconds left in OT.

But let’s first talk about the game before this overtime craziness. While the score sheet notates that there were no goals recorded in the first period, don’t tell that to Filip Forsberg. Early in the first, Forsberg blasted one by Ryan Miller, but was immediately waved off by the officials as being played with a high-stick. After a quick review, it was still determined to have been played with a high-stick and the score remained at 0-0.

Austin Watson, on the other hand, made up for the missed goal just 35 seconds into the second period for his third goal of the season. Mike Fisher (14) and Roman Josi (16) assisted in giving Nashville the lead early into the second.

Nashville would maintain that lead until Miller was pulled towards the end of the third period. And guess what? That extra attacker move proved successful for Vancouver, as Brandon Sutter slipped the puck by Rinne to tie the game. With 49 seconds left. Woof.

It’s no surprise that most Preds fans feared the worst as time ticked down to zero in regulation. Again, overtime hasn’t exactly been Nashville’s strong suite (to put it nicely). Needing these points, the Predators would have to figure it out or push it to a shootout.

One advantage Nashville had over Vancouver last night was its overall game. It wasn’t hard to see that the Predators were the stronger team throughout regulation, but when it comes to overtime, that doesn’t really matter. However, Nashville did take that momentum into overtime, with it looking like the Predators would win it early with a goal from Roman Josi. However – yet again – Nashville’s goal was waved off, this time due to goaltender interference by Viktor Arvidsson.

When it seemed like all hope was lost, Roman Josi and Calle Jarnkrok sent the crowd into a victorious roar. Rushing down the ice, Roman Josi made the methodical pass to Jarnkrok who “put the biscuit in the basket”.

Glory. Pure glory. Of course, now Nashville will have to beat Vegas off with a stick (no Swedes in the expansion draft). With this amazing GWG and OT goal, Jarnkrok knocked off a few franchise records, too:

But let us not forget the guy who should’ve gotten a shutout last night: The Eraser himself. Rinne stopped 29 of 30 shots-on-goal, including some pretty close calls from the Sedin twins:

Last night’s performance was a step in the right direction for Nashville in order to keep the playoff hopes alive. However, was this an example of what’s to come or was it just another bout of inconsistency? You can find out tomorrow as the Predators welcome in the 22-17-5 Boston Bruins. A win against Boston could finally push Nashville down the path they’ve been struggled with all season.

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NSH seeks Victory in SO over BOS

Source: Frederick Breedon/Getty Images North America

Source: Frederick Breedon/Getty Images North America

After a lackluster performance (by everyone but Pekka Rinne) in San Jose Saturday, the Predators returned home for a brief moment to welcome in the 15-13-2 Boston Bruins. So, how did the Predators fair against the “B”s from the East?

First Period:

  • Though both teams would send nine shots on goal during the first, none could get beyond the beasts from Finland in the nets.
  • Both sides were given powerplay opportunities, but could not capitalize.

Second Period:

  • Milan Lucic would get the ball rolling at 4:04, giving Boston the lead for the majority of the second period.
  • Mike Fisher would then tie it with just thirty seconds left in the period for his second goal of the season. May we also say this was on the powerplay? Yes, it was! Nashville is now a resounding 2-47 on the powerplay at home this season. Shea Weber (12) and Filip Forsberg (18) would do the assisting.

Third Period:

  • Mike Ribeiro would give Nashville the lead at 1:31 into the third for his ninth goal of the season. James Neal (8) and Ryan Ellis (9) would pick up the assist points.
  • The Preds wouldn’t lead long as Reilly Smith sent a wrister flying past Pekka at 3:28 to tie the game.

Overtime:

  • Despite a few shots on goal, the five minute overtime would prove uneventful.

Shootout:

  • NSH – Derek Roy – GOAL
  • BOS – Brad Merchand – MISS
  • NSH – James Neal – MISS
  • BOS – Reilly Smith – MISS
  • NSH – Filip Forsberg – MISS
  • BOS – Patrice Bergeron – MISS

With Pekka’s save on Bergeron’s shot, Nashville slipped away with the two points in the shootout. It wasn’t that Nashville didn’t come out strong last night, it was simply the fact that Boston is notoriously a bigger, more physical team than most others. They were there in the right places at the right time to put the extra pressure on Nashville, ultimately keeping the score as low as it turned out to be. You also have to factor in the fact that Tuukka Rask is simply on point when it comes to goaltending; very similar to Nashville’s Finnish phenom who occupies a net.

It is good to note that Filip Forsberg continues to master the leader board when it comes to rookies. Not only does he lead in total points within the rookie class (30), he also leads in plus/minus (23), goals (12), and assists (18). Wowza.

Another fun fact to point out is that, with this win over Boston, David Poile is now the second all-time winningest General Manager with victory 1,171. He trails New York Rangers GM, Glen Sather who hold 1,278 wins.

The Predators take a few days off before heading northward to Minnesota to take on the Wild, a division rival they have yet to face thus far this season. Then it’s a stop in Columbus and a visit to Boston before coming back to welcome in the Flyers on December 27th (Shea Weber bobblehead night).