Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Predators Fall to the Flames 3-2 In A Shootout

The Nashville Predators got out-Predatored at Bridgestone Arena, dropping a 3-2 decision in a shootout to the Calgary Flames.

Joe Colborne scored the lone goal in the shootout for the Flames to secure the win.

Throughout the night, the Predators lost puck battles and for the most got out skated and out worked by the Flames. The Flames did a great job of limiting the Predators breakouts, clogging the neutral zone and making entries difficult. As a result, the Predators offense never really got in sync and struggled to find consistency.

The Predators were out shot 28-21, the first time they have been out shot this season.

Filip Forsberg staked the Predators to a 1-0 lead at 8:46 of the first period with his first goal of the season. Forsberg took a pass from Derek Roy and  ripped a shot past Flames netminder Kari Ramo from the face off circle.

The Flames answered with a goal by T.J. Brodie. They got a break when Anton volchenkov went dow to block the shot and it hit his stick and ramped over the Shoulder of Pekka Rinne at 10:01 of the first.

Calgary took a 2-1 lead at 5:19 of the second period off a goal from Mark Giordano on the power play.

The Predators would answer with Mike Ribeiro getting his first goal as a Predators. He gathered in a rebound of a Craig Smith shot that Ramo could not control that slid to the off side of the net, and he was able to bang it in at 15:10 of the second period.

A scoreless third period and overtime led to the shootout. The Predators sent Derek Roy, James Neal, and Olli Jokinen out in the shootout and Ramo was able to stop them all. Rinne gave up a goal to Colborne and stopped Jiri Hudler.

Some observations:

  • Rinne made some great saves through the course of the game and got some bad luck on the deflection off Volchenkov's stick. the flames did a good job of controlling the puck in the offensive zone and keeping pressure on the Predators, and rinne bailed out the defense on more than a few occasions.
  • As good as Rinne was, Ramo was outstanding. He made some very good saves, including off a re-direct from Craig Smith in the third period.

  • The Predators had a difficult time handling the aggressive forecheck of the Flames, which disrupted their offensive flow all night. The flames attacked the puck in all zones and the Predators struggled to handle the pressure.

  • Colin Wilson, who has generally been invisible so far this season, was moved up to the wing on the line with James Neal and Mike Ribeiro in the middle of the second period. I liked the way that line looked with Wilson on it. May this is what it takes to get Wilson's game jump started. He used his speed well to compliment his line mates.

  • Shea Weber led the team in TOI with 30:53.

  • The Predators were 0-2 on the power play.

  • Craig Smith was +2 and had 2 assists on the night.
The Predators struggled tonight, but they can learn from this game and hopefully improve, especially when it comes to handling the aggressive pressure and the intensity of their opponent.

They get their chance Friday night in Winnipeg against a divisional foe.

My three stars:

1. Kari Ramo

2. Mark Giordano

3. Craig Smith

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