Thursday, October 22, 2015

Predators Dominate the Ducks 5-1

The Nashville Predators continued their torrid start to the season, running their record to 6-1 with a 5-1 pounding of the Anaheim Ducks at Bridgestone Arena.

After a scoreless first period that had the feel of two heavyweights getting a feel for each other, the Predators exploded for 3 second period goals to take a 3-0 lead going into the final frame.

Eric Nystrom was the beneficiary of strong play by Austin Watson to notch the first goal of the game. Nystrom took a pass from Watson and drove to the front of the net and beat Anton Khudobin to get the Predators on the board.

Ryan Ellis blasted a puck past Khudobin off a pass from Mike Ribeiro to make it 2-0. Ellis was able to fit the puck into a small opening as Khudobin was moving across his crease.

Mike Ribeiro made it 3-0 just after a Ducks power play had ended as Ribeiro's pass was blocked right back to him and he snuck the shot between the pad of Khudobin and the post.

The Predators didn't take their foot off the gas in the third period. ryan Ellis broke into the zone and slid a pass to Mattias Ekholm, who absolutely blew a shot past Khudobin to make it 4-0.

The Ducks scored on the power play as Jiri Sekac was left alone cruising down the slot and he beat Pekka Rinne to make it 4-1.

After the Ducks resorted to form and ran Rinne and go to the penalty kill, Colin Wilson roofed a laser under the crossbar to make it 5-1 and snuff out any possibility of the Ducks making a late ru n.

Some observations:

  • Ryan Ellis, Mattias Ekholm, Mike Ribeiro, and Colin Wilson all tallied their first goal of the season. these guys, especially Wilson and Ribeiro, need to start finding the back of the net and hopefully this will be the start of a scoring run for them.
  • James Neal picked up an assist tonight. With that point, neal tied his longest point streak as a Predator (4 games). Neal has 5 goals and 3 assists in his last 4 games.
  • The three point night by Ellis (1G-2A) was the second three point game of his career. The last came October 21, 2014 against Arizona.
  • Mike Ribeiro had a 3 point night with a goal and 2 assists. Ribeiro has dropped down to center the second line, while Mike Fisher has moved up to center the top line of Neal and Filip Forsberg. This move by the coaching staff has paid dividends for the Predators as both lines have really been going.
  • The Predators have scored the first goal of the game in all 7 contests this year.
  • The Predators have scored at least 3 goals in 5 straight games.
  • The Predators have not allowed a first period goal this season.
  • It was good to see the Predators play a full 60 minutes tonight. While the Ducks have struggled early this season, there is no doubt they are talented and can be explosive. The Predators kept the Ducks off balance throughout the game, and more importantly, kept up the pressure in the offensive zone and attacked the net. This is how this team has to play, especially as they get into their contests in the division.
  • Shea Weber led the Predators in TOI with 22:58. This is about 6 minutes less than his usual amount of ice time, and is a tribute to Barret Jackman and Seth Jones, who are eating up some ice time.
  • Austin Watson's assist on Nystrom's goal was his first assist of his career.
  • Mike Fisher is one point from tying Marek Zidlicky for 15th on the Predators all time point s list. Fisher has 174 points.
  • Pekka Rinne made 27 saves on the night, and shut the door on the Ducks any time they tried to mount a concerted attack. The lone goal by the Ducks was a defensive breakdown on the penalty kill as the Predators left Sekac alone in the slot, leaving Rinne with no chance to stop the shot.
  • The power play goal by Sekac was the Ducks first power play goal of the season.
The Predators showed that when they play a complete game, they are awfully hard to beat. It was good to see contributions from several players that needed to get going, ad if they can do that consistently, the Predators are going to challenge in the West.

My three stars:

1. Ryan Ellis

2. Mike Ribeiro

3. Pekka Rinne

No comments:

Post a Comment