What a difference eleven days makes. On Tuesday December 6, after the Predators had lost to Phoenix 3-2 at the Bridgestone Arena which dropped their home record to 4-5-3, Coach Barry Trotz was searching for answers.
The Predators had gotten no traction all year and had not pieced together more than two wins in a row at any point in the season which was headed toward the most extensive stretch of home games of this year's schedule.
Trotz was trying to make sense of the Predators inability to have consistent results and said, "I'm not looking for any big runs, like five or six games together. We've got the mentality that there is so much parity in the league that if you take two out of three from now to the end of the season then we'll be in good shape."
Since that night, the Predators had a miracle finish in Columbus, scoring two goals to tie on the goalie pull, and another to win in overtime, and then put together a streak of four wins at home, in stunning fashion, to give Trotz the five game win streak he thought was unobtainable just days before.
When asked about the streak after Saturdays's 2-1 shoot-out win over St. Louis, Trotz explained his prior thoughts. "You don't expect it (win streak) because of parity in the league. Every game is like a playoff game and you have to be focused and prepared. If you are not, that's how you get blown out."
"That's why I talked last week and you see some of those teams in the league where one night you are 3-2 against a team and then the next night you play them and it's 8-1. That's the National Hockey League right now which is great for the fans and it's great for the entertainment value but it's tough on the heart and the nerves every night."
Things will not get any easier for Barry Trotz's heart in the coming weeks as they will face seven tough opponents between Tuesday's clash with the Capitals in Washington and Calgary's New Year's Day match at the Bridgestone Arena.
The Predators are only off on Christmas Eve and Christmas and other than that will be playing seven games in the eleven days NHL games are scheduled.
Buddy Oakes for PredsOntheGlass