|PHX||0||1||1||0||(0 - 0)||2|
|NSH||1||1||0||1||(0 - 0)||3|
Alexander Radulov took advantage of overtime to extend his goal scoring streak to a franchise-record six straight games as the Predators topped the Phoenix Coyotes 4-3 in front of a sell out crowd at Sommet Center on Saturday evening.
|Highlights: Predators 3,
Phoenix 2 (OT)
With 49.2 seconds left in the overtime period, Radek Bonk blasted a shot from the right point. Radulov, set up just outside the top of the goal crease, redirected the puck high to the glove side of Phoenix netminder Ilya Bryzgalov. The puck hit high on the shoulder and trickled over and into the net.
Radulov, who has seven goals during the streak, became the first Predators player to reach 20 goals this season. His six-game goal scoring streak ties the franchise record, originally set by J.P. Dumont earlier this season.
Dan Ellis, making his first appearance since a shutout at Colorado on Jan. 22, stopped 35 shots for his 12th win of the season and sixth 30-save performance. Martin Erat was the offensive star, posting a goal and an assist for his 11 multi-point game of the campaign and third in the last six games.
Nashville had a chance to win the game in regulation, but Martin Gelinas lost an edge with the Coyotes coming through the neutral zone which led to a Phoenix two-on-one from the blueline. Peter Mueller fired a shot from the right wing that trickled through Ellis's pads and stopped at the goal post. Steven Reinprecht poked the loose puck across the line with 2:57 remaining in regulation for his 13th score of the season.
For the second straight game the Predators got on the board early, claiming a 1-0 lead 3:31 into the contest. Erat possessed the puck in the corner to the left of Phoenix goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov, skated up the sideboards until he got face-off dot high and fired a pass to David Legwand in the slot in front of the net. Legwand re-directed the pass inside the far post for his 12th goal of the season.
Erat's puck possession gave the Predators a 2-0 lead at the 5:57 mark of the second period. Erat circled up high in the zone with the puck and then came down the bench-side boards. He carried the puck to the face-off dot and snapped off a shot for his 16th goal of the season, Erat's 10th point in the last nine games.
A defensive zone miscommunication cost the Predators midway through the period, allowing the Coyotes to keep the puck in the offensive end after a routine dump-in. Phoenix kept Nashville scrambling and Shane Doan was able to capitalize with a shot from high in the slot between the tops of the face-off circles, Doan's 17th goal of the season.
The Coyotes had an opportunity to tie the game when they were awarded a full 2:00 five-on-three power-play after Legwand was called for slashing and Rich Peverley was called for slashing during play on the delayed penalty. Nashville's penalty killers limited Phoenix to only one quality opportunity. The Preds cleared the zone as the penalties expired to generate a two-on-one with Peverley and Legwand. Peverley carried the puck down the right wing and saucered across the crease to Legwand, but Bryzgalov extended fully to make the pad save sliding left to right.
Midway through the third period, Bonk had a chance to give the Predators some breathing room when he deked a Coyotes defenseman in the slot to create a one-on-one opportunity with Bryzgalov down low, but the Phoenix netminder made another key pad save.
Ellis made some big saves of his own to preserve the lead, including a kick save on Mathias Tjarnqvist's redirect with 4:34 remaining in regulation.
Nashville continues its four-game homestand on Tuesday night when the Predators host the Carolina Hurricanes.
With the win, Nashville leap-frogged Vancouver for the #8 seed in the Western Conference playoff race, one point behind Calgary and Colorado for sixth place and two points behind Anaheim for fifth place ... The Predators are 21-1-1 when leading after two periods ... Nashville is 23-3-2 when scoring first ... The teams went the first 5:30 of the second period before they finally skated 5-on-5 for the first time. The teams opened 4-on-4 due to matching penalties called after the whistle to end the first period, which was followed by minor penalties at the 0:33 mark, 2:03 mark, and 3:30 mark of the second period … Ellis is 6-1-1 in his last eight decisions … Dumont had his franchise and career-long 16-game scoring snapped in the game. Dumont recorded 22 points during the streak on eight goals and 14 assists.
Head Coach Barry Trotz
On getting the overtime win rather than the regulation win… "Obviously we would’ve liked to get the two points and give them nothing, but they only got the one point and the last thing we wanted was to lose that game. In the end, we gained a point on them and gained two points on some other teams, so it was real positive."
On Predators carrying the play in overtime… "I thought we did but early in the second period they were carrying the game and pressing in the third. When we gave up the lead we said we’ve got to get this back and we need the win, so the guys on the bench stepped up and took control."
On how Radulov played without Arnott tonight… "Radulov was really good, as well as Martin Erat who scored a big goal and was pretty dynamic and real strong with the puck. His goal was an absolute missile."
On when Arnott will return… "He’ll be ready to go again on Tuesday against Carolina. He was at morning skate but felt that it would not help his team by playing tonight and decided to rest. He’ll have a solid three days off and then be ready to play again on Tuesday."
On the five on three penalty kill in the second period… "That was extremely huge for our penalty killers. Ellis made some pretty good saves and our penalty killing was what won us the game, especially since they were all over us in the second period. Two quick goals by them that would give them all the momentum but since we stopped them that helped to bring the momentum back to our side."
Predators defenseman Dan Hamhuis
On batting the puck out of the air to keep Phoenix from scoring… "There was a little bit of an odd-man rush and the shot off the wings wasn’t going in the net, but I just got it out of there to avoid the scramble."
On the style of hockey the Predators are playing now… "We talk about it a lot as a team that these are playoff-style games now. Phoenix is right there with us in the standings and both teams, you can tell, were playing their hearts out tonight.”
Predators forward Alexander Radulov
On the game-winning goal… "It was kind of a long shift and I was bottled in the corner. Bonk came up to me and helped. I gave him the puck and went straight to the net. There was a great blast from Shea Weber to Bonk for the one-timer. When it hit Bryzgalov then it hit my shoulder and after that I didn’t see it and it just slid into the net. Everybody worked hard. We deserved to win. Our goaltender gave us a chance in the third period. It was a great game."
On changing his defensive style… "If you want to play and get a lot of ice time you have to take care of business in your own zone. Help block shots, get the puck out of your zone, it’s tough but you’ve got to do it. You have to pay the price."
On the play of Dan Ellis… "Danny was outstanding and he gave us a huge chance. He deserves more than third star of the game, I think."
|David Legwand (12) Tip-in - ASST: Martin Erat (24), Rich Peverley (2)|
1 - 0 NSH
|Martin Erat (16) Wrist shot - ASST: Dan Hamhuis (18), Radek Bonk (9)|
2 - 0 NSH
|Shane Doan (17) Wrist shot - ASST: Derek Morris (10)|
2 - 1 NSH
|Steve Reinprecht (13) Backhand shot - ASST: Peter Mueller (18), Ed Jovanovski (29)|
2 - 2 Tie
|Alexander Radulov (20) Deflected shot - ASST: Radek Bonk (10), Shea Weber (7)|
3 - 2 NSH
|Niko Kapanen Interference on goalkeeper against Dan Ellis|
|J-P Dumont Roughing against Keith Ballard|
|Keith Ballard Roughing against J-P Dumont|
|Derek Morris Hooking against Martin Erat|
|David Legwand Hooking against Zbynek Michalek|
|Steve Reinprecht Hooking against Jerred Smithson|
|Rich Peverley Slashing against Shane Doan|
|David Legwand Slashing against Peter Mueller|
|Darcy Hordichuk Fighting (maj) against Daniel Carcillo|
|Daniel Carcillo Fighting (maj) against Darcy Hordichuk|
|Daniel Carcillo Misconduct (10 min)|
|Daniel Carcillo Game misconduct|
|Ed Jovanovski Holding against Vernon Fiddler|
|SA: 37||TOI: 64:10|
|Saves: 34||EV: 29 - 32|
|PIM: 0||PP: 4 - 4|
|SV%: .919||SH: 1 - 1|
|SA: 37||TOI: 64:10|
|Saves: 35||EV: 32 - 34|
|PIM: 0||PP: 3 - 3|
|SV%: .946||SH: 0 - 0|