Preds Wrap-Up California Swing
TONIGHT’S STORYLINES VS. SAN JOSE
The Predators visit San Jose’s HP Pavilion for the first time in 2009-10 tonight after two memorable trips to Silicon Valley a season ago. In the first contest of 2008-09 on Nov. 11, Dan Ellis made a franchise-record 54 saves and faced a club-record 57 shots in a 4-3 overtime victory, the first of three straight wins over California’s teams on the trip, a first for the Predators. In game two on March 19, the teams combined for four goals in the opening period, but didn’t score again. Pekka Rinne
stopped 36-of-38 shots as Nashville fell in a shootout, 3-2. Overall in 2008-09, Nashville posted a 2-1-1 record against the Sharks, winning on home ice in the most recent matchup on March 26 by a 3-2 margin. On that night, Radek Bonk, Martin Erat
and Greg Zanon scored all three of the club’s goals in a span of 2:38 in the middle frame. The Preds and Sharks – who met in both the 2006 and 2007 Playoffs – have had close games of late, with five of the last six being decided by a single goal going back to Feb. 9, 2008.
All-time series highlights:
On Feb. 18, 2004, in his first game with the Predators after being acquired from Chicago, Steve Sullivan
netted a hat trick and four points (3g-1a) in a 7-3 win at the Sommet Center. Blueliner Marek Zidlicky notched a franchise-record five assists/points in the game as well... On Oct. 14, 1999 – in game No. 9 of season No. 2 for the franchise, Nashville put 52 shots on goal in a 5-1 San Jose win at the Sommet Center. It still stands as the most shots in franchise history.
Rinne posted a 1-0-1 record with a 1.92 goals-against average and a .942 save percentage against San Jose a season ago… The Sharks are one of two teams Jason Arnott has 50-or-more points against, with Phoenix (53) being the other. Nashville’s captain has an even 50 points (26g-24a) in 50 games against S.J. entering tonight… Tonight will be Marcel Goc
’s first game against the team that drafted him 20th overall in 2001 (highest ever by a German). In 265 games with the Sharks from 2005-09, he posted 54 points (20g-34a), and in 37 postseason contested, he amassed eight points (3g-5a). One of the three playoff goals sent San Jose to its last appearance in the Western Conference Finals – he scored the series-clinching goal in Game Six of the 2004 Western Conference Semifinals against Colorado.
Career highs/highlights attained against the Sharks
Jason Arnott – Played in his first career game and notched his first career goal on Oct. 6, 1993 against Arturs Irbe.
J.P. Dumont – Scored his first career goal on March 6, 1999 against Steve Shields.
Dan Ellis – Saw a career-high 57 shots and made a career-high 54 saves on Nov. 11, 2008.
– Had his only career penalty shot on Feb. 28, 2007 against Evgeni Nabokov (no goal).
– Played in his first game as a Predator, notched his first goal as a Predator against Nabokov, and posted his fourth career hat trick on Feb. 18, 2004.
– Played in his first career game on Oct. 5, 2005.
TEAM QUICK HITS
With Cody Franson
and Francis Bouillon
scoring two of Nashville’s three goals on Saturday, defensemen have now accounted for 11 of Nashville’s 30 goals this season (36.7 percent). Eleven goals from D-men enters Monday’s game tied for third with Phoenix (11). Only Atlanta (15) and the New York Rangers (13) have more. Franson also had an assist, giving blueliners 17 of the club’s 52 helpers (32.7 percent)… The Predators are 7-1-1 when scoring more than one goal… Nashville has a power-play goal in five of the last seven games, going 6-for-30 in that span (20 percent). Prior to the active streak, the Predators went 1-for-27 (3.7 percent) in the first eight games of 2009-10… In addition to the seven man-advantage markers, Nashville has two shorthanded goals in the last seven games, meaning eight of its last 18 goals have come from special teams (44.4 percent)… The Predators scored twice in the third period on Saturday at Los Angeles, giving them nine final-frame markers in the last seven games after starting the season with two third-period goals in their first eight outings. Of the nine goals, all but two of them have been scored at the 9:45 mark or later, and three of them held up as game-winners… Nashville is 5-1-0 when scoring the first goal of the game, the League’s eighth-best winning percent (.833) in that situation… The Predators have been shorthanded 56 times this season (3.7 times per game), the fifth-fewest in the NHL. The club also ranks second in the League in fewest penalty minutes per game (9.9).
PLAYER QUICK HITS
scored his second goal of the season on Saturday at Los Angeles, boosting Nashville’s record to 12-2-2 since the start of 2008-09 when he scores. Ward has points (2g-3a) in each of Nashville’s last five victories… Kevin Klein
played 21:00 at L.A., and has logged more than 20 minutes in 10-of-15 games this season. Prior to this season, he had played more than 20 minutes in a game just twice in 81 career contests… Francis Bouillon
ranks ninth among NHL defensemen in hits (42)… Pekka Rinne
has posted 3-1-0 record, a 1.66 goals-against average and a .936 save percentage in his last four starts.
TROTZ MOVES INTO SEVENTH ON WINS LIST WITH ONE TEAM
Nashville Head Coach Barry Trotz won his 371st game – all with Nashville – on Saturday at Los Angeles, moving him past Punch Imlach (Toronto, 1958-69 and 1979-80) and into seventh on the all-time wins with one team list. Next on the list is nine-time Stanley Cup winner Scott Bowman’s tenure with Detroit from 1993-2002 (410). Trotz has spent 835 games behind the Predators bench, leaving him just seven away from tying Glen Sather’s tenure with the Edmonton Oilers (1979-94) for seventh in games coached with a single team.