Predators Survive a Coyote Attack

Nashville Predators 5, Phoenix Coyotes 4 in a Shootout

The Nashville Predators won this game by the slimmest of margins, the shootout. Andrei Kostitsyn proved to be the hero by scoring the only goal in the shootout. The game shouldn’t have even gone to that point in the first place. The Predators were up by two in the 3rd, but couldn’t keep the lead. I wasn’t happy with the win, but we will take the two points. Now, the Predators are only two points behind 4th place, Detroit Red Wings.

There were a lot of story lines tonight. I was truly surprised that Barry Trotz would scratch Brandon Yip, again, after he scored against his former team Thursday night in his return back to the line up. Also, this game was different in two ways. There was a few times in the game where it was wide-open. The other times in the game were very close and forechecking styled. Lastly, I learned that Mike Smith is good at using his stick. Smith knew how to clear the puck with his stick and send it down the ice. Mike Smith reminded me a little bit of Martin Brodeur, known for his stick skills.


Crazy Second Period

The second period was very eventful. It was kind of expected because the first period was actually pretty lame. And probably several people fell asleep during the first period while watching the game. As you will read later in the ‘Period By Period Summary’, you will believe me. 

The second period had four goals scored in it. Two for each side. The period was pretty even with back-and-forth action. There was one series in particular that set your blood pressure high. I believe the time of it was 12:30-10:46. The Phoenix Coyotes had one breakaway attack, but the Nashville Predators had two. It went NSH-PHX-NSH. Although, the Predators were the only ones to score. The next paragraphs will go over the attacks.

The first attack was started by Nashville on a 2 on 1. The two forwards were Andrei Kostitsyn and, I believe, David Legwand. Andrei Kostitsyn tried to drag his way around a sliding, Phoenix Coyotes defender. He couldn’t and the defenseman made a huge play. The puck went down the other way with the Phoenix Coyotes making an attack.

KeithYandle led the attack by getting away from all ‘Yotes andPreds players on the right side of Rinne at the neutral zone. Yandle started in on Rinne. Pekka came to the top of the crease to challenge him. Yandle made a small deke, then shot right into Rinne’s leg pads while he was standing up. Yandle had a small spot to score, which was from the top of the blade of the stick and where the pads meet. The Predators went on another attack that was successful.

Sergei Kostitsyn and Martin Erat went on the attack, down the other way. Martin Erat had the puck entering the zone on a 2 on 1. Erat made a pass across the slot to Sergei Kostitsyn on the other side Mike Smith. Kostitsyn’s first shot was stopped, but he picked up the rebound in the corner. He shot a second time, while Mike Fisher was crashing towards the net. The second shot by SK74 left a rebound for Mike Fisher to dish home. Fisher did so to give the Predators a 2-1 lead 11:04 in the second period. Fisher’s goal finally lowered the excitement of back-and-forth action.

Season Series

Date Away Home Result
10/13 PHX NSH 5-2 PHX
11/3 NSH PHX 3-0 NSH
12/6 PHX NSH 3-2 PHX
3/12 NSH PHX 5-4 NSH

Line Up Report

Starting Goalies:

Name Saves Shots Decision SV % TOI
#35 Pekka Rinne 31 35 W .886 65:00
#41 Mike Smith 31 35 L .886 65:00

Nashville Scratches: #8 D Kevin Klein (Upper Body), W Jack Maclellan, #18 W Brandon Yip, #23 W Brian McGrattan, #24 W Matt Halischuk and #59 D Roman Josi (Upper Body)

Phoenix Scratches: #2 D David Rundblad, #6 D Daid Schlemko, #11 C Martin Hanzal (Wrist), #12 W Paul Bissonnette, #20 D Chris Summers and #53 D Derik Morris

Period By Period Summary

1st Period 

  • 6:05 in, Paul Gaustad broke away from the Phoenix defense and shot, off balance, right into Smith’s glove. Great save by him, but gave up a rebound.
  • 10:50 in, Andrei Kostitsyn, behind the net, found Patric Hornqvist crashing the slot. The pass was connected, but the shot was into Smith’s chest and back down the other way.
  • 11:20 in, Boyd Gordon was robbed from a goal as Mike Fisher went down in the crease to make a save. Fisher covered Rinne as he was out of position.
  • 16:53 in, Raffi Torres hit his shot off the post all alone in front of Rinne. Pekka was down and he was lucky that Torres’ shot didn’t go in.
  • 19:31 in, Martin Erat scored from the left circle, in between the left arm of Smith, off a drop-pass from Sergei Kostitsyn. 1-0 Nashville.
  • The first period ended 1-0 with Nashville leading. The shot total was even at 8.

Second Period

  • 49 seconds in, a shot by Oliver Ekman-Larsson was deflected by David Langkow in the net past Rinne to tie it up at 1.
  • 5:10 in, Shea Weber entered the zone from the left side of Smith and shot the puck off the crossbar, into the crowd.
  • Around 6-7 minutes in, David Legwand passed behind to Andrei Kostitsyn on the right side of the net, with traffic in front. Andrei was stoned by Smith, by extending his left leg pad.
  • 10:46 in, Keith Yandle used his speed to break away from everyone. Pekka Rinne made himself big(ger) and stopped Yandle’s hard, low shot. The puck went the other way…
  • 11:04 in, Sergei was robbed from a goal after he received a pass from Martin Erat. Sergei picked up his rebound and couldn’t score. Sergei’s second shot was picked up by Mike Fisher, who slammed it home while Smith was on his back. That made it 2-1 Nashville.
  • 11:14 in, Antoine Vermette was sent to the box for hooking. The penalty was killed off.
  • 14:23 in, Keith Yandle was patient in finding a place to score. Yandle deked twice and made two Preds fall to block the shot. Then, he picked his place and it was glove side on Rinne to tie the game up at 2.
  • 15:33 in, Ryan Ellis nailed Mikkel Boedker in the Coyotes’ zone. Ellis came from the blue line and hit Boedker at the top of the circle, shoulder to shoulder. I guess Boedker just got “Ellis’ed”.
  • 16:43 in, Sergei Kositsyn went to the box for tripping. 
  • 17:55 in, Ray Whitney went to the box for tripping and the game went to 4 on 4 hockey. His penalty was later killed off.
  • 18:26 in, Francis Bouillon scored 4 on 4. Bouillon picked up his own rebound and scored under Smith’s blocker to take the lead back, 3-2 Nashville.
  • The second period ended with Nashville leading 3-2. The Predators led in the shot total, 21-18. 

Third Period

  • 2:36 in, Craig Smith scored on a break-away. Smith deked and went back-hand, blocker side. Great pass by Paul Gaustad to get the puck directly to Craig Smith. That goal made it 4-2 Nashville.
  • 7:11 in, Oliver Ekman-Larsson scored from the point, blocker side of Rinne. Ekman-Larsson’s wrist shot was scored in off the post. That made it only 4-3 Nashville.
  • 7:27 in, Mike Smith, the goalie, shot the puck into the crowd. He took a penalty for delay of game. The penalty was killed off.
  • 14:00 in, Antoin Vermette couldn’t score off a one-timer at the left face-off dot. Pekka Rinne came outside his crease to cut the angle down. Vermette shot right into his chest.
  • 15:01 in, Raffi Torres somehow jammed the puck into the net to tie the game. The puck squirted to the left side of Rinne, where it trickled into the net.
  • The game went into OT.
  • Regulation ended 4-4. Nashville out-shot Phoenix 34-33.

Overtime

  • 2:53 in, Keith Yandle had a chance to win the game as the puck was on his blade right in front of Rinne. Yandle shot over the net.
  • 4:30-4:40 in, both teams developed chances on the rush from a defenseman falling down.
  • The OT ended without a goal, so the game went to the shootout.

Shootout

  • Ray Whitney: Shot no good as he tried to go five-hole.
  • Andrei Kostitsyn: Double dangle and went five-hole to score.
  • Radim Vrbata: Came in wide and went backhand. Stopped.
  • Martin Erat: Went in slow and tried to shoot glove side, but was stopped by Smith’s arm.
  • Mikkel Boedker: Came in fast, and went forehand-backhand to only be stopped.
  • David Legwand: Did not go because Nashville won 1-0.

Scoring Summary

NSH Martin Erat – S. Kostitsyn and Gill at 19:31 in the 1st
PHX David Langkow – Ekman-Larsson and Torres at 0:49 in the 2nd 
NSH Mike Fisher – S. Kostitsyn and Erat at 11:04 in the 2nd
PHX Keith Yandle – Vermette and Whitney at 14:23 in the 2nd
NSH Francis Bouillon – Erat and Ellis at 18:26 in the 2nd
NSH Craig Smith – Gaustad at 2:36 in the 3rd
PHX Oliver Ekman-Larsson – Rozsival and Vrbata at 7:11 in the 3rd
PHX Raffi Torres – Langkow and Doan at 15:01 in the 3rd
NSH SO Andrei Kostitsyn in the Shootout

Phoenix Coyotes Players to Watch:

Name Goals Assists +/- TOI
#13 Ryan Whitney 0 1 2 17:29
#19 Shane Doan 0 1 2 22:10
#3 Keith Yandle 1 0 -1 20:01

My Three Stars of the Game

1. Martin Erat: Goal & 2 Assists
2. Oliver Ekman-Larsson: Goal & Assist
3. Andrei Kostitsyn: GW Shootout Goal

Game Highlights

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