Sunday, November 6, 2011

Predators' Comeback and Beat Sharks 4-3 in Overtime

The Nashville Predators found themselves down two goals with 19 minutes left in the game and battled back with a pair of goals in the third period and the game winner in overtime by David Legwand to seal a 4-3 victory over the San Jose Sharks in overtime at the H.P. Pavilion on Saturday night..

After a really lopsided first period, where the Predators, and especially Pekka Rinne, withstood an all-out offensive barrage from the Sharks, the team came back and played resilient, Predator hockey, to come back and finally win in the extra period.

In spite of allowing three goals, Rinne was the difference maker, once again, stopping 35 of 38 Sharks' shots to improve his record to 7-4-2. Anti Niemi played better than he had in recent games, giving up four goals on 35 Predator shots to take the OT loss.

The Predators got two goals from David Legwand including the game winner in overtime. Patric Hornqvist extended his goal streak to five games where he has totaled six goals. Ryan Suter was responsible for the game-tying goal in the third period.

Logan Couture had an outstanding game for the Sharks, picking up a goal and two assists. Joe Pavelski and Martin Havlet scored the other two markers for the Sharks.

The game was a true Predator-type win with many contributors at both ends of the ice and a never say die attitude. The Preds kept pace in the Western Conference and now stand 7-4-2, with 16 points, to move into  a tie for fifth.

The Preds move on to Los Angeles where they will play the Kings on Tuesday and the Ducks on Wednesday.

Comments from the Couch...

First period...

Kevin Klein (ankle, from the third period last game) and Sergei Kostitsyn (lower body) were scratches and Nick Spaling (groin) remains on the IR.

Ryan Suter and Shea Weber were split early and off and on during the game to counter the Patrick Marleau and Joe Thornton split. Jack Hillen and Teemu Laakso only played three shifts in the first ten minutes.

At 13:32, Mike Fisher hooked Joe Pavelski. With 5:45 left, Rinne made the save of the game to that point on the Sharks' power play as Marleau pounded the puck twice at close range. San Jose had three shots officially on the man-advantage.

Rinne earned his keep in the opening period as San Jose was camped out in the Preds zone for most of the period and the Preds mounted little going the other way.

The Predators were horrible on faceoffs in their defensive zone going 2 of 12 while going 5 of 7 elsewhere.

 1st Period       Goals            Shots          Corsi            PIMs         Faceoffs  
Predators        0         7        10      0-2:00 7-12  37%
Sharks           0        18        31      0-0:00 12-7  63%

Second Period...

After the Preds had three shots in the first minute of the period, Legwand threw a slapshot at the net from behind the right circle at 1:02 that initially appeared to be tipped by Colin Wilson but it seems the puck went off Torrey Mitchel based on the scoring decision.

The Sharks came back quickly on a beautiful backhand, no look pass by Logan Couture to Pavelski to tie the game 1-1 at 4:40.

At 6:02, Jamie McGinn was sent to the box for tripping Wilson. The Predators managed only one shot on the power play.

The Sharks scored again on the power play at 9:50 when Havlat scored on a wrister after Laakso went in the box for slashing Mitchel at 9:01.

On the next shift, the Sharks went back on the man advantage at 10:09 when Weber went to the box for slashing McGinn. The Predators penalty kill stood firm.

Thornton got too close to Rinne at 17:40 and was called for goaltender interference to put the Preds on the man-advantage where they managed a pair of shots.

 2nd Period       Goals            Shots          Corsi            PIMs         Faceoffs  
Predators        1        23        26      2-4:00   8-8  50%
Sharks           2        21        13      2-4:00   8-8  50%

Third Period...

Fifty-two seconds into the period an odd bounce off the board victimized Rinne as Couture scored to put the Preds in a 3-1 hole with most of the period left to play.

The Predators came back quickly at 2:27 when Weber fired a shot on net that ended up behind Niemi where Hornqvist saw it and converted to give him goals in five straight games.

Nashville took advantage of a Marleau interference call on Hornqvist at 4:47 when they converted a power play goal by Suter at 5:58 to tie the game 3-3.

The Predators went into a hole at 18:56 when Mitchel drew a hooking penalty from Jon Blum. The Predators penalty kill unit survived the penalty that carried over into overtime.

 3rd Period       Goals            Shots          Corsi            PIMs         Faceoffs  
Predators        2        10        13       1-2:00   8-14 36%
Sharks           1        14         7       1-2:00   14-8 64%


After the penalty kill expired, Legwand and Bouillon worked together to get the puck back to Legwand around the net where he was able to convert the game winning goal.

Overtime       Goals            Shots          Corsi            PIMs         Faceoffs  
Predators        1        2         3      0-0:00   0-1  0%
Sharks           0        1         1      0-0:00   1-0  100%

More Later...

Buddy Oakes for PredsOnTheGlass

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