Post-Game Musings: Game 3 at Detroit

Sunday, 04.15.2012 / 3:08 PM CT / Nashville Predators Playoffs Coverage
By Jay Levin  - Nashville Predators
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Post-Game Musings: Game 3 at Detroit
It was the Pekka Rinne show this afternoon in Detroit. The Nashville goaltender stopped 41-of-43 shots – 18 in the third period alone – to backstop the Preds to a big 3-2 win. Kevin Klein posted a multi-point performance with a highlight reel-caliber breakaway goal in the second period and an assist on the game-winning goal late in the third.

With the win the Preds claimed a 2-1 lead in the series, Nashville’s first-ever playoff win at Joe Louis Arena.

No on to the musings...

Klein Shines – The Suter-Weber duo logged huge ice time, but Kevin Klein’s contributions were crucial to the Nashville cause. His goal drew the headlines --- and it was a beauty of a play --- but it was his play in the defensive zone that really stood out. He was excellent in one-on-one battles tonight and very effective taking away shooting lanes. His shot block 5:40 into the third period prevented a very dangerous rebound chance for the Wings with the score still 2-1 Nashville. And then later in the period, he triggered the three-on-one breakout that resulted in Sergei Kostitsyn’s goal to give the Preds a two-goal cushion. Klein closed out the game with the two points and a +1 plus/minus rating in a physical 22:58 of ice time.

Déjà vu – Sergei Kostitsyn had a partial breakaway 7:30 into the third period in Game 1 of the series, but was foiled by Jimmy Howard's right pad save. Tonight he had a similar scoring opp on an odd-man rush with 3:30 left in regulation and snapped the shot under the crossbar for a huge insurance goal, which became the game-winner when the Wings scored a six-on-four power-play goal with 51.9 seconds left in the game.

2011 Flashback – Today’s game was eerily reminiscent of Game 3 of last year’s Western Conference Quarterfinals Series. Last year after splitting the first two games, Nashville claimed an early 2-0 lead only to see Anaheim race back to tie the game and then the Preds scored early in the third period to re-gain the lead, only to see Anaheim respond moments later, before Mike Fisher netted the winner midway through the frame. Today Nashville again claimed a 2-0 lead before Detroit scored once and nearly netted a second at the tail end of Period 2, but much like last year’s game the Preds held off the surge for a one-goal win.

NSH G Pekka Rinne – 41 saves; 18 saves in the third period
NSH D Kevin Klein – 1 goal, 1 assist; huge blocked shot early in P3 to prevent goal, won a ton of 1-on-1 battles
DET F Pavel Datsyuk – 1 goal; changed game’s momentum, created several other dangerous scoring chances is the official Web site of the Nashville Predators and are trademarks of the Nashville Predators.  NHL, the NHL Shield, the word mark and image of the Stanley Cup and NHL Conference logos are registered trademarks of the National Hockey League. All NHL logos and marks and NHL team logos and marks as well as all other proprietary materials depicted herein are the property of the NHL and the respective NHL teams and may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of NHL Enterprises, L.P. Copyright © 1999-2015 Nashville Predators and the National Hockey League. All Rights Reserved.

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