There’s always one team that gives Nashville trouble and we aren’t talking about Chicago or St. Louis; it is always that underdog team that your mind automatically – when going through the schedule – chalks up as a win. This year’s team that keeps knocking Nashville down a peg or two looks to be the Calgary Flames. Now, we aren’t saying Calgary is a terrible team by any means, but they aren’t a team we as fans go into thinking Nashville is going to have some trouble with… until this season. The season is still young, but losing twice to Calgary thus far (with only two meetings) and the fact that the Predators simply struggle against them could spell trouble down the road within the Western Conference. However, this weekend wasn’t a complete loss and happily, that win came in Canucklehead territory. Here are the highlights from this past weekend’s romp through Western Canada:
Friday, October 31st – Nashville @ Calgary:
– The first period proved goal-less, with both Calgary and Nashville taking a good amount of shots (Calgary 10, Nashville 8).
– Calgary jumped on the board first with a PPG from Sean Monahan at 4:23 after Colin Wilson was charged with goaltender interference.
– Craig Smith would tie it at one with his fourth goal of the season at 5:30 with assistance from Ryan Ellis (5) and Mattias Ekholm (2).
– At 11:09, Nashville would gain the lead with a goal from James Neal, his sixth of the season. Mike Ribeiro (5) picked up the lone assist.
– At 2:36, Jiri Hudler would tie the game in favor of Calgary for his third goal of the season.
– Calgary would collect a second PPG during the game with a goal from TJ Brodie at 4:23 pushing the Flames up 3-2.
– Not two minutes later at 6:37 Calgary would jump to 4-2 over Nashville with a clean goal from Johnny Gaudreau (2).
– Nashville would come back within one at 10:47 with a PPG from James Neal (7) with some assistance from Matt Cullen (2) and Filip Forsberg (7).
– Unfortunately, Calgary managed to keep Nashville at bay in time for regulation to run out, sealing the win in their favor 4-3 in the Saddledome.
Sunday, November 2nd – Nashville @ Vancouver:
– The first period started off with a goal in favor of Vancouver, as Alexander Edler nabbed his second goal of the season on a PPG.
– Nashville would capitalize on the powerplay at 1:38 into the second with a goal from Filip Forsberg (2), though it was clear that former Predator, Dan Hamhuis knocked the puck in. James Neal (1) and Matt Cullen (3) would pick up the assists.
– Forsberg would sink one without the help of Hamhuis at 6:42 for his third goal of the season, with assistance from James Neal (2) and Mike Ribeiro (6).
– At 18:27, Colin Wilson would collect his first goal of the season and the GWG. Filip Forsberg (8) and Mattias Ekholm (3) picked up the assists.
– It is important to note that Vancouver was playing back-to-back games, but a regulation win is a regulation win.
Nashville is almost done with its trip around the Western Conference, with the next stop in Winnipeg to visit the Jets on Tuesday night.