Game Recap

Predators 3, Coyotes 0

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 3:48 AM

Associated Press

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Predators 3, Coyotes 0
Phoenix Coyotes 0, Nashville Predators 3

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -The Nashville Predators found an unlikely way to end their losing streak - with a pair of power-play goals.

Shea Weber and Cal O'Reilly each scored on the power play, and Pekka Rinne made 33 saves for his third shutout of the season in Nashville's 3-0 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes on Tuesday night.

Jordin Tootoo also scored for the Predators, who snapped a four-game skid.

After a seven-game winning streak, the Coyotes have lost two straight in regulation for the first time this season.

"This was a big game for us, but that is part of what the NHL is," Phoenix captain Shane Doan said. "You get lots of chances to respond, and we have a great chance tomorrow night."

The Coyotes will try to bounce back Wednesday night in Minnesota.

Weber scored the game's first goal at 3:26 of the opening period. The Nashville captain had the puck in the right circle when his attempted pass into the low slot caromed back to him, and he sent a wrist shot into an open net.

O'Reilly doubled the lead at 12:48 of the second.

With the Predators on a 5-on-3 power play, Steve Sullivan sent a pass from the left of the Phoenix goal across the crease to O'Reilly, who had an open net of his own.

"We just went through our options," O'Reilly said. "Sullivan did all the work, and I had an empty net there."

That two-man advantage was created when the Coyotes took three consecutive penalties in the middle of the second period. The Predators first had a 5-on-3 for 9 seconds, followed by another 5-on-3 for 50 seconds. O'Reilly's goal came with 3 seconds left on that 5-on-3.

"We had some guys really play hard, but in the end, you can't take penalties like that and expect to be successful," Phoenix coach Dave Tippett said. "That's something that will be addressed."

The goal was O'Reilly's fifth of the season. Sullivan assisted on both of Nashville's power-play goals.

Nashville entered with the league's 27th-ranked power play, clicking at just 11.1 percent. But now, the Predators have two power-play goals in two of their last three games.

"The 5-on-3 goal can really be a momentum changer, and for us, it really gave us some breathing room," Nashville coach Barry Trotz said. "I thought Sully made two great passes on the power play and that's what clicked tonight."

Rinne was sharp, turning aside 10 shots in the first period, 13 in the second and 10 in the third for his 17th career shutout.

"We had a desperation in our game tonight," Rinne said. "The penalty killing did a good job. The power play did a good job. All of the areas we have been practicing have improved."

Ilya Bryzgalov faced just 22 Nashville shots. It was the Russian's first road regulation loss of the season. He is 5-1-2 away from home.

"They played well on the power play, especially in the zone," Bryzgalov said. "They move the puck side to side really well and always had somebody in front of me."

Tootoo's empty-net goal in the final minute completed the scoring.

Phoenix has won just twice in its last 11 games at Nashville.

NOTES: Weber's goal was his 175th career point. He is tied with Marek Zidlicky for second in Nashville history for points by a defenseman. ... Nashville C David Legwand missed his sixth consecutive game with a lower-body injury. ... The Coyotes had not allowed a power-play goal in their previous three games. ... Phoenix LW Scottie Upshall played his first game in Nashville since being traded from the Predators to the Philadelphia Flyers in the Peter Forsberg deal in February 2007.

Head Coach Barry Trotz
On calling a time out for the 5 on 3 power play…
They had been out there and what I wanted was those guys fresh. We worked on and talked about the five- on-three and what those guys would try to do. One thing that surprised us a little bit is that they were really aggressive on the entry, which sometimes teams aren’t as aggressive there. They were really aggressive and caught us off guard, but once they got it set up they made a couple of quick plays and great passes. I thought Sully (Sullivan) made two great passes on the power play and they clicked tonight. It was good to get a goal early on the power play. I thought early on the power play we were moving the puck really well and getting some looks and creating some different angles. They got that goal and then the five-on-three goal which really can be a momentum changer. For us, it gave us some breathing room – which we haven’t had a whole lot of. I didn’t like the power play the last few times; they were pressuring pretty hard up ice and we stopped working with the intensity that you need to and supporting the puck. Therefore, it was a “schmozzle” – it is the best word I could come up with.

On Erat’s recovery…
One of the things that happens in this game when you are having people coming back from injury, is it takes some time to get back. Marty (Erat) missed close to ten games there, and sometimes it takes five or six games until you really get moving the way you can. Marty has been skating much better. When he’s skating and working the way he can, he can create penalties and create offensive chances. He can be a really effective guy and I thought the last couple games you could see it coming for him. He just needs a little more puck to go in for him. He had a great chance on the power play when it came off on the breakout and he got to the he had Bryzgalov out, but I think Bryzgalov might have short poked him with the stick.

On switching up the lines…
It gave a little flexibility. One of the things that happens is you get a line that you begin to rely on. We really started to rely on O’Reilly’s line a lot in the first 20 games, just because we’ve had injuries in the middle. I just thought they needed a change. They were looking a little bit haggard, if you will. I put Wilson out there hoping he had a little bit of an offensive touch. He has a big body and I wanted to give him some weight. It was just to shake things up to see if we could get more of a goa,l and we were able to, obviously, on the power play – which is strange for us lately (laughs).

Goaltender Pekka Rinne
On turning things around…
Tonight was a huge win. It has been tough the last few games but I think the direction we are going has been pretty good. We have been playing hard but we just haven’t gotten the results – haven’t been scoring goals. Tonight we got a couple and we played pretty tight defensively. Obviously, we still probably have to work on a little bit – playing a full 60 minutes. We have to be extremely happy with two points. Every night it is so hard to win these games and we feel good right now.

On getting some offensive support tonight…
I think anytime you play offense as a five man unit and defense as a five man unit – it makes me feel really comfortable. I know that the other team won’t score too many goals. That is the way we need to play.

Forward Cal O’Reilly
On the plan going into the five-on-three power play…
We just went through our options. We’ve been practicing it every week and we just wanted to make sure that we executed and went through our options. Sullivan made a great pass – he did all the work and I had an empty net there.

On locking down a lead…
It is good for our confidence. They still had some chances; we’ve got to tighten up a little bit more. Pekka came through there at the end. To hold them off and get a shutout here is good.

Captain Shea Weber
On tonight’s game…
It was good. I think it was good for our power play to get the team off on the right foot.

Pekka was good. We had a sloppy third period – we need to still tighten that up. They had a few too many chances but we got the two points and that is all that matters.

It was sloppy. I think all of us kind of sat back and we need to play the same way all 60 minutes.

scoring summary
1st Period
PPG - Shea Weber (3) ASST: Patric Hornqvist (7), Steve Sullivan (6)
1 - 0 NSH
2nd Period
PPG - Cal O'Reilly (5) ASST: Steve Sullivan (7), Ryan Suter (6)
2 - 0 NSH
3rd Period
EN - Jordin Tootoo (3) ASST: Jerred Smithson (2)
3 - 0 NSH
penalty summary
1st Period
Joel Ward  Hooking against  Martin Hanzal
David Schlemko  Interference against  Jerred Smithson
Ryan Suter  Hooking against  Taylor Pyatt
2nd Period
Radim Vrbata  Hooking against  J-P Dumont
Derek Morris  Tripping against  Martin Erat
Adrian Aucoin  Hooking against  Martin Erat
Sergei Kostitsyn  Tripping against  Keith Yandle
3rd Period
Scottie Upshall  Hi-sticking against  Shane O'Brien
Martin Hanzal  Hi-sticking against  Jerred Smithson
Keith Yandle  Slashing against  Joel Ward
goalie stats
Ilya Bryzgalov
Ilya Bryzgalov
SA: 22TOI: 59:10
Saves: 20EV: 13 - 13
PIM: 0PP: 6 - 8
SV%: .909SH: 1 - 1
Pekka Rinne
SA: 33TOI: 60:00
Saves: 33EV: 26 - 26
PIM: 0PP: 5 - 5
SV%: 1.000SH: 2 - 2 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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