• PRINT
  • RSS

Mully's Musings: Oct. 1 vs. Carolina

Saturday, 10.1.2011 / 11:14 PM CT / Training Camp Central
By Bryan Mullen
X
Share with your Friends


Mully\'s Musings: Oct. 1 vs. Carolina
false
The exhibition season is finally over.

Now the Nashville Predators will see if they can carry over the success they had into the regular season. Nashville concluded the preseason by going 7-1-0 overall and winning its final six games. On Saturday night, the Predators beat Carolina 2-1 at Bridgestone Arena when Craig Smith scored the game-winner with just 10.3 remaining in overtime.

The Predators exit the preseason without any major injuries and are poised to start strong. Let’s start the musings …

This is becoming repetitive: Craig Smith is not intimidated and could be a force for the Predators this season. Sound familiar? It seems every time the talented young forward steps on the ice for Nashville, good things happen. His overtime game-winning goal drew raves from the coaching staff, and not just because it obviously won the game. It was because he made a smart and controlled play even though it was a desperation moment. Another big plus deals with the dressing room. Smith is not a brash hotspot with entitlement issues. He’s a perfect fit for the Predators for multiple reasons.

Rinne is ready: No. 1 goaltender Pekka Rinne is ready for the regular season and said he wants to improve on 2010-11 when he was a Vezina Trophy finalist. He didn’t face too many shots and stopped 20 of 21. The lone goal he allowed was fluky. It came from the stick of Carolina’s Bryan Allen in the first period. It was a soft shot from a long distance soft shot, but Rinne thought it was tipped and was going high over the net. At the last moment, he saw it and said he tried to block with his head, but it was too late. It was one of those rare moments for Rinne, and nothing should be read into it. He is poised once again to be one of the NHL’s top goaltenders.

Ellis makes a case: Ryan Ellis played arguably his best game of the exhibition season and is forcing the coaching staff and management to make a tough decision. As of Saturday night, a decision had not been made if he will remain in Nashville or will be sent to Milwaukee. He set up Patric Hornqvist’s goal in the third by blasting a shot on the power play and was solid on defense. Even if Ellis does start the season in Milwaukee, expect him to be back in Nashville at some point this season.


Three Quotes
G Pekka Rinne: “Going 7-1, with players battling for all the open spots on the roster, I think that’s a great thing. It adds confidence to the whole team, and not just the players but for the coaches and management.”

Coach Barry Trotz: “Our strength is our numbers. We’re like a pack of wolves. We’re going to come after you.”

F Craig Smith on the overtime goal: “I used (Colin) Wilson as a screen. When he came across he actually screened the goalie for about half a second there and I shot it off his backside. It was a great play by Wilson and I just got it on net.”


Three Stars
1. F Craig Smith: Game-winning goal as he confidence continues to soar

2. G Pekka Rinne: Stopped 20 of 21 shots and is itching to start the regular season

3. D Ryan Ellis: Had an assist, five shots and made a case to start the season in Nashville

SCHEDULE
 

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS
 

WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 z - ANA 82 51 24 7 228 221 109
2 y - STL 82 51 24 7 239 197 109
3 x - NSH 82 47 25 10 226 202 104
4 x - CHI 82 48 28 6 220 186 102
5 x - VAN 82 48 29 5 236 220 101
6 x - MIN 82 46 28 8 227 198 100
7 x - WPG 82 43 26 13 223 204 99
8 x - CGY 82 45 30 7 237 213 97
9 LAK 82 40 27 15 218 197 95
10 DAL 82 41 31 10 257 257 92
11 COL 82 39 31 12 209 223 90
12 SJS 82 40 33 9 224 226 89
13 EDM 82 24 44 14 193 276 62
14 ARI 82 24 50 8 165 267 56

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
F. Forsberg 82 26 37 15 63
M. Ribeiro 82 15 47 11 62
R. Josi 81 15 40 15 55
S. Weber 78 15 30 15 45
C. Smith 82 23 21 11 44
C. Wilson 77 20 22 19 42
M. Fisher 59 19 20 4 39
J. Neal 67 23 14 12 37
R. Ellis 58 9 18 8 27
S. Jones 82 8 19 3 27
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
P. Rinne 41 17 6 .923 2.18
C. Hutton 6 7 4 .902 2.61