2016 NHL All-Star Recap: Weekend of Hockey Heaven

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What a weekend for the city of Nashville and for hockey in general. It’s actually hard to believe, after fourteen months of planning, the festivities are over and all we have left are memories. But good memories they are! Thousands of hockey fans from across the world gathered in the Music City this weekend, packing the Music City Center, the Bridgestone Arena, Demonbreun Street, and everywhere within walking distance. Although we are fully aware of how great our city is, it was humbling to hear how much fun people from elsewhere were having and the great praise they had for Nashville.

NHL FAN FAIR:

NHL Fan Fair, which opened Thursday at 4PM, had more than enough activities to keep you occupied for hours on end. While my STH Rep said – without kids – you could knock everything out in one day, I ended up going Thursday and Saturday (and could’ve gone Sunday if I felt like spending another $40 to get in). Merchandise booths to spend money, hockey-related activities, autograph hours, Jell-O molds, and a leaning tower of Velveeta kept everyone on their toes. Oh yeah, and the music. Music outside and music inside; hope you like it!

I am actually glad I went Thursday night because Saturday was just as crowded as I figured it would be. Thursday was busy, but you averaged 5 minutes per line compared to 15 to 20 minutes per line on Saturday.

NHL WINTER PARK:

The NHL Winter Park, which was opened back in December, kept fans busy with an outdoor skating rink, plenty of vendor booths, giant light-up hockey pucks featuring the All-Stars, and music. If you did not have tickets to the All-Star events or wanted to buy tickets for Fan Fair, the Winter Park area still provided plenty of hockey entertainment without breaking the bank.

I wish I had taken more pictures of all the pucks. I got a little busy checking everything out.

NHL ALL-STAR SKILLS COMPETITION:

What is arguably the most entertaining event of the All-Star Weekend, the Skills Competition didn’t fail to impress the hockey masses. With appearances by Chewbacca, Jaromir Jagr’s “brother”, and Shea Weber’s epic slapshot, Saturday night’s festivities were ones to remember.

As no surprise, Shea Weber held onto his ‘Hardest Shot’ contest streak, notching a slapshot clocked at 108.1 MPH. A little less than last year, but 108 nonetheless. Detroit’s Dylan Larkin also made headlines, breaking the fast lap challenge record, one that has been in place since 1996.

 

NHL ALL-STAR GAME:

In what is normally considered the lesser of the two main events of the weekend, with the new 3-on-3 format, things got a little more interesting. The Atlantic Division knocked out the Metropolitan Division in the first round. Then, the Pacific Division surprisingly bumped out the Central Division in the second round. Even though the home team was knocked out, the final round between John Scott’s Pacific Division and Jaromir Jagr’s Atlantic Division was still pretty spectacular. But, while the Central was still in the game, all four Predators All-Stars ended up with at least one point (Rinne, assist; Josi, goal; Neal, two goals; Weber, assist). And the Man of the Hour John Scott? He notched two goals.

While the League didn’t start out with John Scott as an MVP choice for the All-Star Game, the fans made it very clear that if he didn’t win… Well, there’d be rioting equivalent to Vancouver’s epic Stanley Cup loss riot.

Well, the League listened and named John Scott MVP of the NHL All-Star Game. Smart move, NHL.

In what started out as a write-in vote turned into the highlight of the entire NHL All-Star Weekend. After the League tried to pressure him to drop out of the All-Star contention, John Scott not only won the hearts of Nashville but the hearts of the hockey world as a whole. As P.K. Subban said, “Everything he got at the end of it, he deserved”. You can’t even write stories as well as this played out. In fact, we hear he has already been approached about selling the movie rights. Okay, that’s a little crazy but hey, Hollywood’s struggling for some fresh material so you never know.

A successful weekend for the city of Nashville? You bet. Success at pointing out that Nashville is a hockey market? Amen. While we all soak in what’s left of our All-Star Weekend high, it’s time to focus on the second half of the 2015-16 season. Did this break help or hurt the Predators or anyone else? We’ll all find out soon enough. But I have to admit, it was refreshing to enjoy all things hockey with fellow hockey lovers from around the League and world. We were essentially one big happy hockey family. Now, it’s back to the real world.

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Preds Sweep Western Road Trip with 2-1 Win over Flames

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Source: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

No one can argue that Nashville looked like a completely different team this time around when it came to a road trip; especially compared to the previous one. Perhaps it was a change in the lineups, a stern lecture from the coaching staff, or a combination of a multitude of factors. Whatever it was, something connected within the team out in Western Canada and the Predators now have a record to prove it. After losing 4-1 to the Chicago Blackhawks last Tuesday, the Predators hit the skies for Manitoba to take on divisional opponent the Winnipeg Jets. In their first meeting with the Jets back on November 14th in Nashville, the Predators dominated the former Atlanta Thrashers 7-0. After that? The Jets returned to Nashville on January 5th, crushing the home team 4-1. And after that? The Predators nabbed their only point in their previous road trip, losing to Winnipeg 5-4 in OT. Despite a blaring concern in the goaltending department, the Predators pulled themselves together and started to dig – as a team – out of the hole they currently find themselves in, defeating the Winnipeg Jets 4-1.

Next on the schedule was Taylor Hall and his Edmonton Oilers. Nashville and Edmonton have only met once this season, which was back on October 10th in Nashville when the Predators defeated the Oilers 2-0. For some reason, the Oilers have always been a team that, despite their not-so-great record over the years (they currently sit in last in the Western Conference), a team that the Predators have struggled to beat. That wasn’t the case on October 10th nor was it the case Saturday when Nashville claimed victory in Edmonton, winning 4-1.

The Vancouver Canucks were Nashville’s next opponent on the schedule, another team that has held Nashville back many times before. Strangely enough, this was Nashville and Vancouver’s first meeting of the season. Though Nashville is ahead of Vancouver in the standings, that means nothing to the Sedin twins. Thanks to a first minute of the game goal by Craig Smith, the Predators held onto that momentum, even after the Canucks tied it shortly thereafter. It would be James Neal who sent the Predators up 2-1 early in the third period that would seal the game in favor of Nashville.

And lastly, we come to last night’s game against the Calgary Flames. In their first meeting of the season, back on December 15th, the Flames barely slipped by with the 2-1 OT victory. Nashville, high from winning their past three games, were no doubt itching to claim victory. Pekka Rinne was given the start in the previous three games, but last night was Carter Hutton’s time. And boy, did he shine. It is no secret that Predators fans are a bit hard on their team’s goaltenders. Despite a terrible game from the rest of the team, if a loss happens, somehow, someway, the blame falls to the goaltender. Sometimes though, it is an issue with goaltending. There’s no denying that Rinne has been in a rut lately and Carter Hutton, who is usually the subject of ridicule, has been playing rather well. However, this road trip undeniably showed the strength of both goaltenders and boy, was it something to behold.

Just six minutes into the first period, Mike Ribeiro notched his sixth goal of the season with assistance from Craig Smith (6) and Mattias Ekholm (16). Surprising that Ribeiro would score, as he tends to drop pass more than anyone in the league it feels like, but Nashville would hang onto that 1-0 lead through the remainder of the first period. Calgary would get the upper-hand three times alone in the first period due to penalties on the Predators, but Carter Hutton and the defense held their own to remain in the lead.

In the second period, however, Calgary would be at the disadvantage the most, taking four penalties throughout its course. Perhaps Calgary was called for so many penalties because of… this:

Dennis Wideman, apparently a little ticked that the officials missed the hit Miikka Salomaki jarred him with, cross-checks a linesman in retaliation. The more you watch it, the less case Wideman has to say it was “an accident”. There’s a good chance he’ll face a ten-game suspension at minimum. It’ll be interesting to see what the League does… or does. Wideman was not penalized during this game for this hit, by the way.

But, thanks to so many penalties, Shea Weber was able to launch one of his signature slapshots Karri Ramo to give Nashville the 2-0 lead on the power play. Weber’s 12th goal of the season, he was assisted by Roman Josi (25) and Ryan Johansen (27).

The Predators would continue to hold onto that 2-0 lead until about five minutes left of the third period when Flames captain Mark Giordano and his team crowded the net, finally catching Hutton off guard. Similar to Tuesday night’s showdown in Vancouver, Nashville would take a last minute penalty to give Calgary at 6-to-4 man advantage. The defense did what it does best and Hutton kept his cool, holding back the Calgary Flames to seal the 2-1 victory and to sweep the Western Canada road trip 4-0-0.

The Predators and the rest of the NHL have descended upon Nashville for this weekend’s All-Star festivities and holy crap am I excited. As are you, I bet. It was just recently announced – as I was writing this – that James Neal will now replace the sick Jonathan Toews in the All-Star lineup. Yay! We have four All-Stars now! Another injury to note, Alexander Ovechkin, will not make the trip here either and has been replaced with Evgeny Kuznetsov who also plays for the Capitals.

Four victories in a row. It’s a nice feeling, isn’t it? Very reminiscent of last season, yes? Now the question is, will Nashville lose its strength and momentum with this All-Star Break? Honestly, it’s not that big of a break. They are technically missing one day in which their could be a game (normally); they’ll be back at it against the St. Louis Blues on Tuesday. I guess we’ll just have to see. But for now, we’ve got some sure fire goaltenders and a spot in the wildcard for the playoffs.

 

Must Eats: Nashville

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So you’re coming to Nashville for the NHL All-Star festivities. If you’ve been here before, welcome back; if you’re new, we are excited to have you. Let me begin by saying that Nashville has a bit of a complex. This whole ‘It City’ status has brought a lot of newcomers to town that have decided to stick around, changing up the atmosphere and landscape a bit (you will notice a lot of construction cranes). We are still all about the Southern Hospitality though, so whether you stick around the Hipster areas (12th South, the Gulch, East Nashville) or just down by the honky tonks, you’re bound to have a great experience while here.

That being said, let me also inform you that Nashville is called “Music City” not “Country Music City”. Yes, we are best known for Country music and we will defend it to the death, but there’s more than just honky tonks, cowboy boots and hats. By the way, we can spot a tourist in a heartbeat. No one really wears cowboy boots or hats. Not the majority, anyway. Back to music, Nashville is home to such bands and artists as Paramore, Kings of Leon, Kesha, and Jack White, just to name a few. So for locals, it was kind of a bummer to just see Country artists listed as musical performances for All-Star Weekend. However, one cannot be too upset as that is what Nashville was built upon, so let’s not forget our roots before we get wiped out by condos.

With all the formalities behind us, let’s get to the must-eats! I’ll put this out there now that I am in no way a foodie or expert on restaurants. I just know what I like and what I think you’ll like, too. Also, I love hockey just like you, so you should totally trust me. Okay, let’s do this:

– RESTAURANTS – Southern Comfort –

UNCLE BUD’S CATFISH SHACK
2719 Old Lebanon Road, Nashville, TN
Unclebuds.com

PUCKETT’S GROCERY & RESTAURANT – NASHVILLE
500 Church Street, Nashville, TN
PuckettsGro.com

THE SOUTHERN STEAK & OYSTER
150 3rd Avenue South, Nashville, TN
TheSouthernNashville.com

BARLINES
250 5th Avenue South, Nashville, TN
Barlinesnashville.com

– RESTAURANTS – Barbecue –

PEG LEG PORKER
903 Gleaves Street, Nashville, TN
peglegporker.com

MARTIN’S BBQ JOINT
3108 Belmont Boulevard, Nashville, TN
martinsbbqjoint.com

SMOKIN’ THIGHS
611 Wedgewood Avenue, Nashville, TN
Smokinthighs.com

JACK’S BARBQUE
416 Broadway, Nashville, TN
Jacksbarbque.com

– RESTAURANTS – Meat ‘n Three –

ARNOLD’S COUNTRY KITCHEN
605 8th Avenue South, Nashville, TN
Arnoldscountrykitchen.com

THE PIE WAGON
1302 Division Street, Nashville, TN
ThePieWagon.com

– RESTAURANTS – Hot Chicken –

PRINCE’S HOT CHICKEN
123 Ewing Drive, #3, Nashville, TN
Prince’s Hot Chicken

HATTIE B’S HOT CHICKEN
112 19th Avenue South, Nashville, TN
HattieB.com

BOLTON’S SPICY CHICKEN & FISH
624 Main Street, Nashville, TN
BoltonsSpicy.com

– RESTAURANTS – Random –

GABBY’S BURGERS AND FRIES
493 Humphreys Street, Nashville, TN
GabbysBurgersandFries.com

M.L. ROSE – CRAFT BEER & BURGERS
2535 Franklin Pike, Nashville, TN
MLRose.com

THE SMILING ELEPHANT
2213 8th Avenue South, Nashville, TN
TheSmilingElephant.com

THE PHARMACY BURGER PARLOR
731 McFerrin Avenue, Nashville, TN
ThePharmacyNashville.com

BISCUIT LOVE
316 11th Avenue South, Nashville, TN
BiscuitLove.com

PANCAKE PANTRY
1796 21st Avenue South, Nashville, TN
ThePancakePantry.com

Since you will be here for the All-Star festivities, I won’t bother going into anything else you should check out beyond food. If you do somehow get bored and want some options of activities to do around Nashville, just tweet me @Lady_Preds and I’ll give you a local’s opinion.

Whatever you choose to do or eat, Nashville is excited to have you visit our awesome city.

 

 

NHL Reveals 2016 All-Star Jersey

Source: NHL.com

Source: NHL.com

Behold! The NHL finally released the 2016 Honda NHL All-Star Game Jerseys and… while I think they could’ve gotten a little more creative, they are ten times better than last year’s model:

Last year’s model… Woof. Source: Blackhawks.NHL.com

Yeah, away with that neon mess. Also noted, thank the heavens above they didn’t go “full honky tonk” on these jerseys; I was really afraid of that, and I am sure a few others were, too. We are tired – really tired – of that never-ending joke. Moving on, here’s an excerpt from the NHL about the jersey reveal:

Each All-Star jersey features the official NHL Shield infused with the Predators’ gold in the crest. For the on-ice version of the All-Star jersey, the crest has been constructed with reflective material which glimmers in certain light as a salute to Nashville’s vibrant night-life scene. The black and white color scheme in each jersey shares the colors of the keys on a piano to celebrate the city of Nashville’s “Music City” nickname.

The All-Star jerseys will feature numbers and letters designed as modern interpretations of traditional country music poster lettering, which has been a defining aesthetic of Nashville. The numbers for the on-ice versions of the All-Star jerseys also will have the same reflective material as the crest. The tri-star mark, which appears in the neck gusset as well as on the pant, is a tribute to the Tennessee state flag and the Predators and a symbol of the elite athletes participating in the 2016 Honda NHL® All-Star festivities. Each All-Star jersey will feature two full-color shoulder patches – the player’s home team logo and the NHL All-Star logo.

So, what do you think? Like ’em? Hate ’em? I’d give it a good two thumbs up.

Keep your eyes peeled today. More information regarding the 2016 NHL All-Star Game will be announced at some point today and we’ll have information here when it’s available.

 

Preds reveal ASW Winter Park Logo, Set to Open Dec. 12th

Image Source: Brooks Bratten, Nashville Predators

With just two days to go before they open the 2015-16 season at home against the Carolina Hurricane, the Nashville Predators revealed some much anticipated information regarding the NHL All-Star Weekend.

Unveiled late this morning outside of Bridgestone Arena, the Nashville Predators released the All-Star Weekend Winter Park logo, which will sponsored by Bridgestone (makes sense). Along with the sweet logo, the organization also released some details regarding the fun:

At the Walk of Fame Park, the site where the Winter Park will be held in conjunction with the 2016 NHL® All-Star Weekend, the Nashville Predators, Nashville Sports Council and Bridgestone Americas debuted the logo of the event that is now two months away.

The Winter Park will feature an ice rink, concert stage and family-focused activities, which will help to bring the excitement of the NHL’s showcase event outdoors for the community at large to enjoy. Predators CEO Jeff Cogen said the Park will also help to kick off the festivities weeks before the All-Star Weekend on Jan. 30-31, with the Park scheduled to open on Dec. 12.

Click here to read the entire press release from the Preds.

Festivities begin December 12th, which means the All-Star Weekend is almost here!

Vote for Lady Preds!

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Holy moley! This was exciting to come across this afternoon! Lady Preds has been nominated for the Tennessean’s Toast of Music City’s Best Sports Blog! Okay, so even if I have zero chance of winning, I am just grateful and speechless to be nominated. Especially to be nominated with the likes of Penalty Box Radio and On the Forecheck.

I know I am not “first on the scene” with all the Predators news, but I definitely do try my darnedest and I love every single minute of it. I love being able to write about the best sport on earth. I hope to one day take it even farther!

Okay, so voting – You can find the Best Sports Blog ballot under the People & Places tab! Please vote often! I believe it’s once a day. Click here to get to voting!

And, thank you to everyone who nominated Lady Preds! I am grateful for my followers and thank you for sticking with me!

Preds name Fisher Clancy Nominee

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The Predators have narrowed their nominee for the King Clancy Memorial Trophy down to a one Mike Fisher. Here’s word from the official Predators press release:

Nashville Predators forward and alternate captain Mike Fisher has been named the team’s nominee for the 2015 King Clancy Memorial Trophy, as voted on by his teammates. The trophy is awarded annually to the NHL player who best exemplifies leadership qualities on and off the ice and has made a noteworthy humanitarian contribution in his community.

“Mike is a great player on the ice, a role model off the ice, a leader on the ice and a leader in the community,” Predators General Manager David Poile said. “The Clancy nomination is very well-deserved for Mike and all that he does for the Nashville Predators and the Nashville community.”

Fisher, who has now been nominated three times for the award by his Nashville teammates, is now in his third consecutive season serving as an alternate captain for the Preds. The 34-year-old center has recorded 19 goals and 39 points on the season, even after missing the first 21 games of the campaign with an Achilles injury. Fisher notched his 500th career point on Jan. 29, 2015, against St. Louis.

The Peterborough, Ontario, native works closely with Room In The Inn, a full-service homeless facility in Nashville; Cottage Cove Urban Ministries, a Nashville based non-profit that serves inner city youth; Rocketown, a local youth outreach facility, among his many charitable endeavors. Fisher was honored with the 2012 NHL Foundation Award, given to an NHL player who applies the core values of hockey – commitment, perseverance and teamwork – to enrich the lives of people in his community.

There’s no doubt with his contribution to Nashville and the surrounding communities, Mike Fisher was the dominant choice as nominee for this award.

Hutton Shines but Preds fall 2-1 in OT to Habs

Source:  John Mahoney

Source: John Mahoney

Are you still a little hot under the collar after last night’s game? You should be. Though the Predators came out with one point, they still lost in what could be the worst way possible: terrible calls from the officials. Both goals awarded to Montreal were brought on by fluky penalties called on Craig Smith (first a holding, then a tripping in OT). The Predators also lose their record of no back-to-back losses this season. Very frustrating, indeed.

Things to take away from this game:

  • Taylor Beck was indeed the odd man out for last night’s bout against the Canadiens, meaning Olli Jokinen is safe for another day.
  • Eric Nystrom, as expected, returned to the ice last night after being placed on the IR back on January 8th. Nystrom saw 13:41 minutes of ice time.
  • Mike Ribeiro notched his 10th goal of the season off a tip-in deflection from a Seth Jones shot. Ribeiro was drafted 45th overall by the Canadiens in the 1998 NHL Draft and spent the 1999-00 through 2005-06 seasons (including a few stints with Montreal’s AHL team and a stint in Finland during the 04-05 lockout) with Montreal. Needless to say, last night’s goal for him hit the sweet spot for this native of Montreal.
  • Seth Jones collected his 11th assist of the season on Ribeiro’s goal, along with Filip Forsberg who picked up his 25th assist. Forsberg know has 40 total points this season and continues to lead rookies in all categories.
  • Carter Hutton had his best game this season, hands down. Sure, he hasn’t gotten to see too much ice time, but with Pekka out, he has certainly stepped up when it mattered most. Check out this save below:

  • Though his record states 1-4-3, you cannot argue that this is truly a stat that undermines the true skill behind Carter Hutton. He blocked 25 of 27 shots, most of which were very Pekka-esque. Luck, sadly, just hasn’t been on his side so far.
  • Peter Laviolette had some choice words for the officials last night after that botched tripping call that lead to Montreal’s victory in OT. If you read lips, you know what the head coach is barking about (and he has every reason to do so):
  • Mike Ribeiro also went on record to express his feelings towards the refs:

The Predators are now 30-10-5, which – on the bright side – is a feat to be proud of in its own right. Unfortunately, it stings a little more when you’ve gotten spoiled on multiple victories. A game like Detroit’s on Saturday should’ve hit Nashville right in the gut – now that was a face-plant. Last night’s in Montreal, however, can be dealt to the zebras; the Predators dominated that entire game and did not pull a “Green Bay” and drop the ball in the last few moments of the game.

The Predators get a much needed hiatus due to the All-Star break and will be back here at home on Tuesday, January 27th to welcome in the Colorado Avalanche.

Preds tally Win over Wild 3-1

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After capturing the top of the league on Thursday night, the Predators would need to continue with a win in St. Paul to hang onto that title just a little bit longer. The Wild, who have been having some rather interesting issues, are hurting for a win, and what better way to knock the best team in the league for a loop?

SCRATCHES: Mark Arcobello
NOTEWORTHY: Update on injuries, Ryan Ellis will be re-evaluated after the All-Star break (January 24-25), which means he’s out for at least two weeks; he has also been placed on the IR with an lower-body injury. Also, Eric Nystrom’s injury has gone from undisclosed to classified as an upper-body.

First Period:

  • Mike Fisher would get the ball rolling early in the first period with his seventh goal of the season at 4:01. Colin Wilson (14), who has been on fire this season (to say the least), picked up the lone assist.
  • Minnesota’s Charlie Coyle would tie the game at 14:14 for his fourth goal of the season.
  • The Wild would outshoot the Predators 14 to 8, pointing out just how incredible Pekka Rinne really is.

Second Period:

  • Both the Wild and the Predators would take nine shots on goal, but none could make their way past the opposing goaltenders during the second period.
  • Nashville took four penalties during the second period alone, including one from Pekka Rinne (served by Craig Smith). Even more proof on why Pekka Rinne is the best goaltender in this league this season.

Third Period:

  • Calle Jarnkrok would collect his fifth goal of the season at 3:48 after being in the right place at the right time whilst Niklas Backstrom was distracted. Olli Jokinen (3) and Shea Weber (19) tallied the assists.
  • At 8:47, Colin Wilson would notch his 12th of the season with the unassisted game winning goal.
  • Though Wilson sealed the game winner within the first ten minutes of the period, the game certainly wasn’t over. With just a few minutes left in the game, Matt Cooke decided cross-checking Shea Weber in the face was a good idea. It wasn’t.
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    Source: TheScore.com

    As the wise Antoine Dodson once said:

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Needless to say, Angry Shea reared his ugly head and beat Matt Cooke to a pulp. Here’s the video of said beat-down:

And, if watching his teammate get his butt kicked wasn’t enough, Nate Prosser stepped up to duke it out with Mike Fisher with just a minute and a half left in the game:

And, as you can see from the video, Angry Mike also made an appearance after Prosser took a cheap shot at Taylor Beck.

After kicking the Wild’s keister not only physically but numerically as well, the Predators secured another day as the leaders of the league and improved their record to 28-9-4. The Predators welcome in the Vancouver Canucks on Tuesday and then Barry Trotz and the Washington Capitals on Friday night.

NSH claims 1st in League after OT Win over DAL

Source: John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images

Source: John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images

Though it landed in overtime, the Predators captured the all-important two points to claim first in not only the Western Conference, but the entire League. Wowza. Or, as Sean McIndoe so eloquently put it:

Did the Predators ruin a bunch of predictions for the 2014-15 NHL season? Yea, I am going to go ahead and say that’s a big y-e-s to that one. It’s certainly not a bad thing. No one, not even the loyalest of fans, could have imagine that the Nashville Predators would be 27-9-4 at the beginning of January. And no one surely could’ve imagined that would be good enough to take the League. A team from Nashville?

I know, world; it’s hard to believe a bunch of hillbillies could muster the best team in the league. I must ask, though, as to why that always comes up. None of these guys [players], let alone the majority of the staff, administration, organization, what have you, aren’t even from Tennessee! Haters gonna hate. Shake it off.

SCRATCHES: Anton Volchenkov

First Period:

  • Shea Weber set the game in motion at 15:27 with a signature slapshot past Kari Lehtonen for his ninth goal of the season. Mike Ribeiro (27) and Roman Josi (19) collect the assists.
  • Nashville would end the first period leading the Stars 1-0.

Second Period:

  • Jason Spezza would tie the game at 12:51, his seventh goal of the season.
  • In his NHL debut, nonetheless, Miikka Salomaki would claim his first career NHL goal at 16:47, pushing Nashville back into the lead 2-1. Roman Josi (20) and Calle Jarnkrok (6) collected the assists.
  • With just two seconds left in the period, Trevor Daley would sink one past Pekka Rinne to tie the game at two heading into the third.

Third Period:

  • Though it falls in the books that there were no goals tallied in the third period, a different story could be said for Preds fans. In a battle to get the puck to the net, Craig Smith got tied up with Kari Lehtonen, which allowed Filip Forsberg to sweep in for the score. Lindy Ruff and the Dallas bench called foul, claiming Smith was keeping Lehtonen from covering the post. Though originally called a goal, the play was then reversed in a matter of Smith committed “incidental contact” on Lehtonen. Of course, on review, it is clear that Jason Demers is crosschecking Smith into Lehtonen, thus causing the “incidental contact”, but it is all in the books at this point.

Overtime:

  • In a game that should’ve ended in regulation, Shea Weber sealed the victory in favor of Nashville just seventeen seconds into overtime, his second of the night and 10th goal of the season. Mike Fisher (7) and Colin Wilson (13) picked up the assists on Weber’s game winning goal.

Game. Set. Match. With the anticipated two points, the Predators bumped the Anaheim Ducks from the top of the Western Conference and League standings. However, Nashville isn’t out of the clear; both they and Anaheim share 58 points, but because the Ducks have played two more games, the Predators notch the top spot. With that, in order to push further ahead, Nashville will need to beat Minnesota tomorrow in regulation (or at least get one point) and hope that Anaheim gets steamrolled by the Winnipeg Jets on Sunday.

So Preds fans, bask in the glory that is top of the Central Division, Western Conference, and League.
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