Practice Day Report: April 25

Wednesday, 04.25.2012 / 4:34 PM CT / Nashville Predators Playoffs Coverage
By Doug Brumley  - Nashville Predators
X
Share with your Friends


Practice Day Report: April 25

The Predators got down to business on Wednesday, practicing for a full hour over the two rinks at Centennial Sportsplex. It was the first practice for the team since their Round 2 playoff opponent was determined Monday night. Nashville will open the Western Conference Semifinal series Friday in Phoenix against the Coyotes.

The tone of Wednesday’s practice was distinctly different from the tone of the practices on Sunday and Monday. After the team’s day off on Tuesday, the upbeat and playful vibe was replaced with a more serious, business-like attitude, with lots of breaks for instructions from the coaching staff.

Center Nick Spaling said he has liked the rhythm of the practice days and off days as the Preds have waited for other series to wrap up. “It’s been good,” he said. “We’ve still been working on some overall team things over the past couple of days that we needed to just tighten up. It’s helped having those days and being able to practice and stay sharp.”

Paul Gaustad added: “I think with us, [we’re] just trying to physically get healthy, mentally take a little bit of a break—but not too far of a step back—and now just trying to get right back at it.”

Pekka Rinne was a popular man in the locker room after practice, given the Wednesday morning announcement that he is one of three finalists for the Vezina Trophy for the league’s top goaltender. He was runner-up for the award last season.

“It’s great,” Rinne said. ”I was positively surprised. I can’t believe it. It’s the second time and I never would have believed it when I was growing up. I feel very fortunate and at the same time I realize that I play behind a really good team.”

“He was the only one surprised, if he said that,” head coach Barry Trotz said afterward, “because to me he’s an MVP candidate as well as a Vezina candidate. That just shows you how humble and unassuming that Peks is. Good for him. I’m thrilled for him, and well deserved.”

Practice lines on Wednesday:
   White jerseys: Mike Fisher centering Sergei Kostitsyn and Martin Erat
   White jerseys: Nick Spaling centering Andrei Kostitsyn and Patric Hornqvist
   Silver jerseys: David Legwand centering Alexander Radulov and Gabriel Bourque
   Silver jerseys: Paul Gaustad centering Brandon Yip and Craig Smith
   Gold jerseys: Colin Wilson centering Matt Halischuk and Jordin Tootoo

Defensive pairings:
   Ryan Suter and Shea Weber
   Roman Josi and Kevin Klein
   Hal Gill and Francis Bouillon
   Jack Hillen and Ryan Ellis

The Predators also spent a portion of the session practicing the power play. “Last series it seemed early on in the series we lost a lot of momentum on the power play and we can’t afford to do that,” Ryan Suter said.

Power play unit: Fisher, Radulov, Erat, Suter and Weber
Power play unit: Legwand, A. Kostitsyn, Hornqvist, S. Kostitsyn and Josi

SMASHVILLE CENTRAL

SCHEDULE
 

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS
 

WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 CHI 58 36 18 4 160 134 76
2 DAL 55 35 15 5 178 147 75
3 STL 57 31 17 9 138 133 71
4 LAK 54 33 18 3 151 128 69
5 COL 58 29 25 4 155 160 62
6 SJS 53 28 20 5 154 143 61
7 ANA 53 26 19 8 120 125 60
8 NSH 55 25 21 9 142 148 59
9 ARI 54 25 23 6 143 164 56
10 MIN 54 23 21 10 133 134 56
11 VAN 54 22 20 12 125 144 56
12 CGY 54 25 26 3 144 160 53
13 WPG 54 24 27 3 139 157 51
14 EDM 56 22 29 5 138 168 49

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
R. Josi 55 11 29 -2 40
F. Forsberg 55 18 18 -7 36
S. Weber 55 14 21 -5 35
M. Ribeiro 55 6 28 3 34
J. Neal 55 20 13 18 33
M. Ekholm 55 6 19 3 25
R. Ellis 54 6 16 2 22
C. Smith 55 11 7 -1 18
C. Jarnkrok 54 9 8 0 17
C. Wilson 38 4 12 -1 16
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
P. Rinne 20 18 8 .902 2.57
C. Hutton 5 2 1 .916 2.36