NHL.com: With Erat out, Dumont fills void for Preds

Sunday, 04.24.2011 / 4:39 PM CT / Nashville Predators Playoffs Coverage
NHL.com
X
Share with your Friends


NHL.com: With Erat out, Dumont fills void for Preds
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – One of the hardest things for a hockey player – especially a goal-scorer – is to be out of the rhythm of the game and then be called up on to go and produce.

In the final minute of regulation of Nashville's 4-3 overtime win against Anaheim in Game 5, Predators coach Barry Trotz sent right wing J-P Dumont on the ice with goalie Pekka Rinne pulled to try and tie the game – Dumont's first shift in seven or eight minutes, the player said.

Dumont, who did not play in the first four games of the series, only got in the game because of an upper-body injury suffered by Martin Erat in Game 4 that sidelined Erat for Game 5. Dumont finished Game 5 with only 11 shifts – an overtime game, at that -- and less than seven minutes.

However, Trotz knew that Dumont had some deep playoff runs during his days with Buffalo and wanted the 33-year-old's experience out there in that critical situation.

"If Marty was in the game, it would probably be Marty in that situation," Trotz said. "You want that experience … someone who knows those situations. He has a history of finding ways to get a stick on a puck."

On the play in which Nashville ended up tying the game, Mike Fisher won the faceoff and Dumont went to the net, appearing to screen Ducks goalie Ray Emery. Shea Weber's wrist shot from the right point sailed high into the net to Emery's glove side.

"To tell the truth, when I went around the defenseman, I wasn't sure if the puck was on (Cody Franson)'s side or Webby's," said Dumont, who has six goals and six assists in 18 career playoff games with Nashville. "My job was to go in front of the net. We had two guys in front of the net, we had the extra guy. I went behind the (defenseman). When I saw the replay, I saw I screened him pretty good."

Dumont played in 70 games during the season but only in nine after logging 5:23 of time on ice against Dallas on Feb. 26. And he sat out even with injuries to a veteran scorer like Steve Sullivan as younger players like Blake Geoffrion got in the lineup.

"It's not been easy, it's been pretty tough," Dumont said before Sunday's Game 6, in which Nashville had a chance to end the series. "But I always work hard and ready to go. You never want to see one of your guys go down, but that's part of hockey. It's going to happen. You got to get yourself ready and I was ready to jump in and pretty excited to play that game.

"When (Trotz) called my name to take the goalie, I was pretty excited. Just before that, I had a good scoring chance, right in the slot and right on the faceoff that was on my mind – go to the net and maybe the puck will hit me or something – (the goal) was even better. Webby definitely had a great shot. I
know my role and when I'm going to be in, I'm going to work really hard at it."

Throughout the series, even when Dumont was out of the lineup, Trotz praised Dumont for being a professional. Meeting with reporters two hours before the start of Sunday's game, Trotz would not reveal whether Erat would return, which could send Dumont back out of the lineup. Trotz instructed reporters to watch pregame warm-ups. However, he did say that Erat is "progressing quite well."

In putting Dumont in Friday's key situation, Trotz said he went with a "gut feeling" and "luck."

"Every time I've sat J-P out," Trotz said, "he seems to score in his first game back."

Or at least be on the ice for a key goal.

Author: John Manasso | NHL.com Correspondent

SMASHVILLE CENTRAL

SCHEDULE
 

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS
 

WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 z - DAL 82 50 23 9 267 230 109
2 x - STL 82 49 24 9 224 201 107
3 x - CHI 82 47 26 9 235 209 103
4 y - ANA 82 46 25 11 218 192 103
5 x - LAK 82 48 28 6 225 195 102
6 x - SJS 82 46 30 6 241 210 98
7 x - NSH 82 41 27 14 228 215 96
8 x - MIN 82 38 33 11 216 206 87
9 COL 82 39 39 4 216 240 82
10 ARI 82 35 39 8 209 245 78
11 WPG 82 35 39 8 215 239 78
12 CGY 82 35 40 7 231 260 77
13 VAN 82 31 38 13 191 243 75
14 EDM 82 31 43 8 203 245 70

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
F. Forsberg 82 33 31 1 64
R. Josi 81 14 47 -3 61
J. Neal 82 31 27 27 58
S. Weber 78 20 31 -7 51
M. Ribeiro 81 7 43 11 50
C. Smith 82 21 16 4 37
M. Ekholm 82 8 27 14 35
R. Johansen 42 8 26 10 34
R. Ellis 79 10 22 13 32
C. Jarnkrok 81 16 14 1 30
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
P. Rinne 34 21 10 .908 2.48
C. Hutton 7 5 4 .918 2.33