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Mully's Musings: Preds vs. Jets Preseason Game

Saturday, 09.24.2011 / 11:02 PM CT / Training Camp Central
By Bryan Mullen
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Mully\'s Musings: Preds vs. Jets Preseason Game
There was a two-goal deficit to dig out of, a blink-and-miss-it scoring surge, and brand-new jerseys flying around the ice at Bridgestone Arena.

In short, the visuals were quite exciting during the Nashville Predators preseason home opener. The Predators handed a 4-3 defeat to Winnipeg in front of an energized home crowd, which had waited months to see its team return to Bridgestone after a stirring Stanley Cup Playoff run in 2010-11.

Let’s get to it …

Mully’s Three Musings
1) Tootoo’s fire: Combine the latter part of last season and the first portion of this training camp, and it can be argued that Jordin Tootoo is playing at the highest level of his NHL career. Obviously determined, Tootoo is faster and sharper on the ice, and his hustle is off the charts. He still plays with the edge that fans have grown to love, but his offensive production is greatly improving. Nashville trailed 2-0 at the end of one, but less than five minutes into the second, Tootoo scored an unassisted goal to cut the Jets’ lead to 2-1. The goal was symbolic of Tootoo’s return to the ice: he stayed with it, battled and was rewarded.

2) Rinne is fine: A collective gasp shot through Bridgestone when goaltender Pekka Rinne headed to the bench bleeding from his head with 5:36 to go in the second. Not to worry, he’s fine. He took 12 stitches over his right eye and was in good spirits after the game. Rinne allowed one goal on eight shots, but the aspect of Rinne’s game that is most evident now is confidence. The Vezina Trophy finalist from a season ago admitted recently he got too down on himself after losses last season, but that he’s better at putting disappointing performances behind him now. That may not sound like a big deal, but over the course of a long season, it’s huge.

3) Hornqvist does what he does: The hard-nosed and often-face washed Patric Hornqvist scored the game-winning goal with 6:10 to go in the second and once again looks comfortable in one of the most uncomfortable spots on the ice: in front of the goaltender. Hornqvist is working on trying to score from further out, and if he improves in that area, watch out.


Mully’s 3 Stars
1) Jordin Tootoo. Grabbed momentum back with his second period goal. He tied for second on the team in shots with three and had 12:22 of ice time.

2) Shea Weber. Two assists, three shots and a lot of stoic leadership once again.

3) Zack Stortini. Yes, Martin Erat and Sergei Kostitsyn scored key goals and are deserving, but let’s give this one to Stortini. The double minor he drew changed the game and he gave his teammates and fans a sneak peak of what to expect from his this season: physical play and a big presence. He will be a fan favorite in no time.


Three Quotes
1) Head Coach Barry Trotz: “Players earn the right to play longer or to get less time. Some guys have separated themselves positively and some guys have separated themselves negatively. Some guys kicked up their game on account of we were down. Our guys – our key guys – like Martin Erat and Sergei Kostitsyn, really stepped up.”

2) Goaltender Pekka Rinne, on the injury: “The cage on my mask was bent. I don’t know what really happened. It was just one of those things. It was kind of freaky.”

3) Forward Zack Stortini, on his first fight of the season: “It was something that is a big part of my job. You know it’s definitely not my first one.”

SMASHVILLE CENTRAL

SCHEDULE
 

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS
 

WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 CHI 56 36 16 4 158 128 76
2 DAL 53 33 15 5 170 142 71
3 STL 55 30 17 8 132 129 68
4 LAK 51 31 17 3 135 117 65
5 SJS 51 27 20 4 147 138 58
6 NSH 53 25 20 8 136 139 58
7 COL 55 27 24 4 148 152 58
8 ANA 50 25 18 7 111 115 57
9 MIN 52 23 20 9 127 126 55
10 ARI 52 24 22 6 138 161 54
11 VAN 52 20 20 12 120 142 52
12 CGY 51 23 25 3 134 148 49
13 WPG 52 23 26 3 136 150 49
14 EDM 54 21 28 5 132 164 47

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
R. Josi 53 10 27 -2 37
S. Weber 53 14 21 -4 35
F. Forsberg 53 15 18 -6 33
M. Ribeiro 53 6 27 3 33
J. Neal 53 19 13 18 32
M. Ekholm 53 6 16 3 22
R. Ellis 52 6 15 2 21
C. Smith 53 11 6 -1 17
C. Jarnkrok 52 9 7 0 16
C. Wilson 36 4 12 0 16
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
P. Rinne 20 17 7 .904 2.50
C. Hutton 5 2 1 .916 2.36