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Mully's Musings: vs. Columbus

Saturday, 11.19.2011 / 10:52 PM CT / Features
By Bryan Mullen
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Mully\'s Musings: vs. Columbus
It doesn’t matter what a team’s record is, or its history in another club’s building. In the NHL, any team can win on any given night.

Nashville found that out the hard way on Saturday.

Columbus ended a record winless streak at Bridgestone Arena and defeated the Predators 4-3 in overtime. The Blue Jackets entered with the worst record in the NHL and Nashville had defeated them 17 consecutive times in Bridgestone Arena, which was the longest streak for any team in the NHL. But all that changed.

The game started chippy as two fights broke out in the opening minutes, but things quickly settled down. Columbus came back to tie it twice, then took a 3-2 lead at 1:45 of the third on a power play goal by R.J. Umberger. Less than three minutes later, Nashville came back and knotted it at 3-3 on a goal by Nick Spaling to eventually get the game to overtime and earn the Predators a point. Columbus’ James Wisniewski scored the overtime winner at 2:43.

Still, Nashville has earned six of a possible eight points during its first four games of this five-game home stand. The Predators will host Edmonton on Tuesday before heading out for a five-game road trip. Here are the musings…


THREE MUSINGS
A veteran returns: David Legwand returned from injury and finished with one assist in 18:28 of ice time. Legwand, who was a +1, helped set up the first goal by Colin Wilson with a shot from the point on the power play. Legwand sustained an upper body injury early in the game at L.A. on Nov. 8 and missed the next four games. He had been one of Nashville’s best producers until the injury. In the four games prior to L.A., he had six points (three goals, three assists). He looked fully healthy, and if he plays close to the level that he was before the injury, he will be a key part of Nashville’s upcoming road trip after Tuesday’s game against the Oilers.

Spals comes on: Blake Geoffrion was a healthy scratch on Saturday, and Nashville Coach Barry Trotz said he is in a small group of players are performing at the exact level. That’s not exactly a good thing. Trotz said Nick Spaling was in that group as well, but Spaling appeared to break out of that cluster on Saturday. He scored the tying goal at 14:24 of the third, and Nashville would get to overtime. Spaling played 14:04 and finished at +1. He now has five points (two goals, three assists) in 14 games and needs to keep it up to emerge from that group that has Trotz a tad frustrated.

A positive presence: It’s no secret that good things happen when Captain Shea Weber is on the ice. But this is getting ridiculous (in a good way for Nashville). Weber has now been on the ice for the Preds’ last 12 goals, which stretches back to Nov. 9 at Anaheim. Weber finished Saturday with two assists, a +1 rating and team highs in shots (five) and ice time (25:08). He leads the NHL with a +19.


THREE QUOTES
D Shea Weber: “It’s been a long time (since Columbus won here), but they’re still a good hockey team over there. They’re playing well right now. If they keep playing like that, they’re going to get some points.”

F Nick Spaling on his goal: “It was a good shot by Webs. I just got a stick on it and it snuck in.”

Barry Trotz: “They were checking really well. I give Columbus full credit. Their record is not an indication of how good of a team they are. They’re very talented and have been playing pretty well. Their work ethic has been really good.”


THREE STARS
D James Wisniewski, Columbus: Game-winning goal, 1 assist, team-high 5 shots
D Shea Weber, Nashville: 2 assists, team-high 5 shots, team-high 25:08
G Curtis Sanford, Columbus: Stopped 27 of 30 shots to earn the win

SMASHVILLE CENTRAL

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