The Nashville Predators enter the NHL's Winter Olympic Break winless in their last three. Last Saturday, the Predators fell to St. Louis 4-3 in a shootout and then lost to Minnesota 3-2 in overtime Thursday. Saturday night, the hockey gods did not favor Nashville, as they lost to the Anaheim Ducks 5-2.
Carter Hutton made allowed four goals on 23 shots, but none of which could be directly blamed on him.
Ryan Getzlaf's goal with 1:11 to play in the first period was a own goal by Roman Josi. The Swiss Olympian tried to clear the puck away out of mid-air, but ended up deflecting it into his own net. Getzlaf would then score an empty netter with 36 seconds to play.
Then at 11:45 in the second period, Corey Perry banked a puck off Victor Bartley's leg and into the net to on the power play to give the Ducks their first lead.
Emerson Etem scored the go-ahead game-winner on a deflection from Hampus Lindholm's shot from the point at 4:51 in the third period.
A turnover by Ryan Ellis in his own zone to Daniel Winnik led to a Mathieu Perreault one-timer alone in the low slot with 11:56 to play in regulation.
Simply, the Predators were shooting themselves in the foot and leaving Hutton out to dry.
Nashville's goal scorers were Viktor Stalberg, who played his first game since returning from injured reserve, at 11:35 in the first and Mike Fisher in third on the power play.
Jonas Hiller will head to Sochi hot for the Swiss, making 36 saves in the win.
Nashville's next game will be February 27 as host to the Tampa Bay Lightning.
– I liked the idea of Trotz pulling Hutton with 4 minutes remaining in regulation. It truly showed the desperation of the team to get a point(s) just before the Olympic Break. Although they were unable to capitalize with the extra man, Nashville did have their chances. Hiller came up big to keep the puck out.
– Rich Clune's parting shot on Corey Perry after the game was gutless and dirty. With the game over, there is no reason to give him a little shot, especially before he represents Canada as an Olympian. There has to be a code of conduct that Clune should've followed, but unfortunately, his silly decision costed him a misconduct penalty and likely a fine from the League.
– Nashville now has time to recover from all the injuries. This break should be positive for them because they were not on a hot streak and this will give the coaching staff time to regroup and put the team into overdrive for the final 20+ games of the regular season.
NSH 0-1: Viktor Stalberg – Moser and Bartley at 11:35 in the 1st
ANA 1-1: Ryan Getzlaf – Lindholm and Penner at 18:49 in the 1st
ANA 2-1: PP Corey Perry – Getzlaf and Fowler at 11:45 in the 2nd
NSH 2-2: PP Mike Fisher – Legwand and Hornqvist at 1:05 in the 3rd
ANA 3-2: Emerson Etem – Lindholm (2) and Koivu at 4:51 in the 3rd
ANA 4-2: Mathieu Perreault – Winnik at 8:04 in the 3rd
ANA 5-2: EN Ryan Getzlaf (2) – unassisted at 19:24 in the 3rd
NSH: Carter Hutton (L) – 19 saves on 23 shots; played 56:41
ANA: Jonas Hiller (W) – 36 saves on 38 shots; played 60:00
My Three Stars
1. Jonas Hiller: 36 saves
2. Ryan Getzlaf: 2 Goals & Assist
3. Hampus Lindholm: 2 assists
Line Up Report
Predators scratches: Cullen and Ekholm
Predators starters: Smith, Legwand, Hornqvist, Del Zotto, Jones and Hutton
Ducks scratches: Selanne, Jackman and Vatanen
Ducks starters: Cogliano, Koivu, Etem, Fowler, Lovejoy and Hiller