ATLANTA (AP) - David Legwand scored midway in the third period to lift the Nashville Predators to a 4-3 preseason win over the winless Atlanta Thrashers on Wednesday.
The Thrashers, who had scored only three goals in losing their first three preseason games, tied it at 3 by scoring twice in the second period within a 2:52 span on a goal by Eager at the 14-minute mark. Eager easily beat Nashville goaltender Anders Lindback from 10 feet, converting a perfect pass from Zach Bogosian.
Freddy Myer got the Thrashers within 3-2 with his goal from just inside the blue line at 11:08. His goal came only 16 seconds after Nashville had taken a 3-1 lead on Erat's second goal of the game, a power-play shot past Atlanta goaltender Chris Mason at 10:52.
Suter, who assisted on Erat's second goal, also had a power-play goal in the second period for the Predators. Erat assisted on the goal by Suter that came at 8:09.
Erat had given Nashville a 1-0 lead at 10:12 of the opening period before Atlanta tied it when Nigel Dawes knocked in a rebound of a shot by Oduya 18 seconds before the end of the period. Oduya also assisted on Eager's goal.
NOTES: Dawes had 14 goals last season with Calgary. ... Nashville beat Atlanta 2-1 Monday night with Eager scoring the Thrashers' goal.
|Heading into the start of training camp the Preds coaches and hockey ops staff stated the first three preseason games would be more about giving players a look, while the last three games would be more about getting the team rolling for the regular season. So far the Preds are two-for-two picking up wins over the final three games heading into the preseason finale on Sunday at Washington.
The Preds power-play converted for a pair of goals. Nashville has now scored three power-play goals in its last four periods of action. Special teams was a big area of emphasis this summer and will continue to be a focal point for Barry Trotz and his staff during camp; good to get some positive results out of that attention.
Individually there were some interesting developments from tonight’s game.
The line of Matthew Lombardi centering Martin Erat and Colin Wilson is really starting to click. They were solid in Monday night’s game and followed that up with another good showing tonight. Erat scored a pair of goals tonight, Wilson picked up an assist on the game’s opening goal, and Lombardi was on the ice for Nashville’s first three goals scored. At this point in the preseason development they are probably Nashville’s top offensive line.
Aaron Johnson is having a strong preseason. He was pretty good in tonight’s game, the continuation of strong play throughout his preseason – he was solid on Saturday night against Washington and impressive in Friday night’s game at Carolina. Not only is he making a strong claim for an Opening Night roster spot, but he may well be playing his way into the top-six rotation along the blueline.
Anders Lindback went the distance in net tonight for the Preds. Since Pekka Rinne is likely to go the distance in Sunday’s preseason finale at Washington, the coaches have all the views they’ll get this preseason to make the call on the No. 2 goalie battle. Lindback was pretty good in the first and untested through most of the third, but looked a little shaky during parts of the second period. Still, he got the last chance of the preseason, so not sure if that’s an indicator or where the coaches are leaning?
--Jay Levin, NashvillePredators.com