Tuesday, February 24, 2009

A Win That Can Define A Team

Down 3-1 at the end of two periods, the offensively challenged Preds looked like they were going to drop a game on home ice to the Hawks. The offense awoke with four third period goals to top the Blackhawks 5-3. Not only was this victory huge for the two points the team garnered, but it was a win that this club can build upon for the stretch run to the playoffs. I have said before that we have to have scoring from other lines besides the Arnott line, and tonight the Preds got it. Legwand gets a hustle goal to make the score 3-2. Dumont and Weber add power play goals (the PP unit finally seems to understand that you have to shoot the puck on the power play). Joel Ward gets a goal in the tough area in front of the crease, burying a rebound off a Marty Erat shot. In an earlier post, I had called out Marty for being held off the score sheet for the past nine games. Tonight, he responded with three assists and the first star of the game. Tonight, as a team, this club responded in the the face of adversity.

Granted, Chicago was at the end of an arduous road trip, but every team in the league has arduous road trips on their schedule. This is an explosive Chicago squad that possesses speed and skill, and for two periods, the Preds shut them down. More importantly, the offense came to life and overcame a two goal deficit in crunch time. This is a confidence builder, a win that the team can look back on and draw strength and use to believe in themselves. Winning breeds winning, and a comeback win like this breeds an air of confidence that will be invaluable to this club. Use this win, nurture the confidence, and take care of business.

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