Preds fall to Blues 5-4 in SO – BONUS: Questionable Audio

Source: Harry How/Getty Images

The after effects of the All-Star break has been so-so for the Nashville Predators, with the team pulling out an overtime win against the Colorado Avalanche 4-3 at home on Tuesday, then losing last night to the St. Louis Blues in a shootout 5-4. Getting away with points is good and better than straight losing in regulation, but you can only plaster that “don’t freak out yet” smile across your face in so many games and continue to believe yourself. The thoughts of knowing you cannot get away with this within the playoffs keep pounding in the back of your mind, but you just… keep… smiling. Onward to the recap:

SCRATCHES: Taylor Beck, Pekka Rinne

FIRST PERIOD:

  • The Predators started out strong and on the right foot, with Mike Fisher notching his 10th goal of the season on the powerplay. Roman Josi (22) and Shea Weber (23) picked up the assists.
  • Carter Hutton screened twelve shots on goal by the Blues, keeping the Predators up 1-0 going into the second period.

SECOND PERIOD:

  • Nashville would continue dominance over St. Louis going into the second, as Filip Forsberg notched his 17th goal of the season at 5:36. Craig Smith (13) and Mike Ribeiro (33) pick up the assists.
  • But after Forsberg’s goal, the second period became St. Louis’ property, with Jaden Schwartz helping the Blues to a goal at 8:22.
  • Shortly thereafter, at 12:36, TJ Oshie helped himself to his 14th goal of the season, tying the game at two.
  • Not even thirty seconds later, Steve Ott would take the lead with his second goal of the season.
  • Mike Fisher would step up at 15:32 to tie the game once more, his 11th goal of the season with a short-handed goal. Roman Josi (23) and Calle Jarnkrok (8) would notch the assists.
  • Ryan Reaves, however, would give St. Louis the lead once again at 18:15, his fourth goal of the season.

THIRD PERIOD:

  • James Neal would be the only player to come through for either team during the third period, tying the game and pushing it into overtime. Mike Fisher (10) and Colin Wilson (18) would assist on Neal’s 16th goal of the season.

OVERTIME:

  • No goals – to the shootout we go.

SHOOTOUT:

  • STL – TJ Oshie – GOAL
  • NSH – Matt Cullen – MISS
  • STL – Vladimir Tarasenko – MISS
  • NSH – Craig Smith – MISS
  • STL – Alexander Steen – MISS
  • NSH – Roman Josi – GOAL
  • STL – Kevin Shattenkirk – GOAL
  • NSH – James Neal – MISS

With St. Louis closing the gap for the lead of the Central Division, Nashville really could’ve used two points – especially in regulation. However, to be positive, they still left with a point and still lead the division by four points. Here are some other important notes to take away from this game:

NOTEWORTHY:

  • The St. Louis Blues hold the best powerplay percentage record in the league. Not only did they muster six powerplays last night, Carter Hutton and the Predators’ special teams held the Blues to all six. Oh, and not to mention, Mike Fisher scored on one of their said powerplay opportunities.
  • Mike Fisher collected his 500th and 501st career point during last night’s bout in St. Louis. Congrats, Fish.
  • Speaking of Mikes, Mike Ribeiro continues to prove why he was the best free agent signing for the Preds this past off-season. Collecting an assist, he continues to lead the Predators in points at 47 this season; he currently has 699 career points… I am willing to bet he’ll have 700 by tonight.
  • Filip Forsberg continues to lead rookies in all categories that he can, with 42 points, 17 goals, 25 assists, and 25 plus/minus points.
  • Rinne traveled with the team to St. Louis and participated in practice. His return is eminent. Soon.
  • Carter Hutton picks up yet another loss, but blocked 31-35 shots. Some blocks were outrageous; others, well… his inconsistency with rebounds needs some serious, urgent care.

Now… to discuss what everyone is wondering… What the heck did we hear during the broadcast last night?!
Here’s a little background, in case you missed it: During the first period, sometime around Mike Fisher’s first goal of the night, the sound of a woman… uh… in action (?) could be heard whilst Pete Weber and Stu Grimson were commentating. Take a listen (warning: could be considered offensive or you may be unable to control your laughter):

Yes, you heard exactly what you thought you heard, my friends.

Yes, I deemed it as “barking” at first because I did not want to automatically assume some lady was uh… yea.

Fox Sports Tennessee was quick to apologize, but not before we also got to hear Stu Grimson belching on air:

Needless to say, it was quite an eventful first period for those of us watching from home. I’d also like to say this is the first – and hopefully last – time I have ever had to mention the word ‘porn’ on my blog. Never again, y’all.

The Predators are back at it tonight in Denver to take on the Avalanche, a team the barely defeated on Tuesday. Tonight’s game is Nashville’s last Central Division away game until April 7th and their last Western Conference away game until March 9th.

St. Louis leaves Singing the Blues for Fourth Time in Smashville

Sergei Kostitsyn sealed the game for the Predators with an empty-netter.

The Predators welcome the St. Louis Blues back to the Bridgestone Arena Saturday night, the fourth meeting this season between the two division rivals. Before this game, the Predators had already shutdown the Blues all three times, so St. Louis was itching to ruin the fourth try on Nashville’s home turf. Saturday’s game also welcomed a ton of fans from both sides, the 16th sellout of the season for the Predators. Here are the highlights from Saturday’s game:

KEY POINTS:

  • Even though he made the cover of Saturday’s Preds Press, Jack Hillen found himself amongst the scratched that night, along with Jerred Smithson (his thirty-third birthday, geez – no love) and rookie Gabriel Bourque.
  • The Blues came out a bit scrappy, eager to get the first goal on Pekka Rinne. However, St. Louis made a fatal mistake when David Perron took a hooking penalty, giving Martin Erat his 12th goal of the season with a slap shot passed Jaroslav Halak on the power play at 6:59. Both Patric Hornqvist and Ryan Suter assisted on the power play.
  • Mike Fisher wasted little time at 12:30 with a wrist shot in front of the net, sending the Predators up and over the Blues 2-0. Fisher’s 15th goal of the season was assisted by Sergei Kostitsyn and Martin Erat.
  • The second period produced no goals, but Brian McGrattan reminded Ryan Reaves who you should and shouldn’t drop the gloves against. Though the video is voiced by the St. Louis announcers (and of course they are going to go for Reaves), but anyone with a brain can tell you Big Ern put the little Blues player in his place. We put the video on our Facebook on Saturday, but here it is in case you missed it:
  • Chris Porter made up his fellow Blues players with a goal at 4:01 in the third, finally getting the St. Louis Blues on the board (Dang! No doughnut for us…), his 3rd goal of the season.
  • St. Louis would continue to push Pekka Rinne to his limits, but in the end, at 19:37 with a nice, clean pass from David Legwand, Sergei Kostitsyn sealed the empty-netter along with the game, his 13th goal of the season. Along with the assistance from Leggy, Martin Erat picked up an assist and his third point for the game.
  • Pekka Rinne has been on fire since the get-go, and these last few games have produced some new contortionist moves from the Finnish phenom, keeping expectant goals away from the net. How was he not an All-Star goalie again? Pekka was able to block an amazing 42 of 43 shots on goal (we wouldn’t expect any less).
  • The Blues and the Predators both faced their share of penalties, with the Predators capitalizing on one of three given to them. The Predators also gave the Blues three chances, and here are the culprits:
  1. Jordin Tootoo – 13:27 1st Period – Tripping (absolutely horrible call)
  2. Brian McGrattan – 8:49 2nd Period – Fighting (awesome beat down)
  3. Craig Smith – 8:49 3rd Period – Delaying the Game – Puck over Glass (he sure makes some silly mistakes)

Since the Predators dismantled the Blues and their thought of a win, Nashville is now 4-0-0 against the Blues this season, though each game has been nail-bitingly close. The Predators continue at home on Tuesday when they welcome the oh-so-lovable Vancouver Canucks to Nashville. The puck drops at 7PM!

Also, congrats to everyone who ran, walked, jogged, etc. today during the Predators Fangtastic 5K! Although it was raining, that didn’t stop 1400 fans from taking on the 3 miler! We jogged it, but still felt the burn the next day!

Until then,
GO PREDS.

(Photo credit: Frederick Breedon/Getty Images North America)