PredNation has just been allowed to breathe a temporary sigh of relief, at least for the night. The Preds beat the Phoenix Coyotes by a score of 3-0, behind two power-play goals and stellar play from Pekka Rinne.
Shea Weber opened the scoring for the Preds on the power-play just 3:36 into the first period. Cal O'Reilly tallied on the power-play at 12:48 in the second period to stretch the lead to two. Jordin Tootoo would go on to add an empty net goal late in the third period to ice the game away, and to give the Predators a win that they desparately needed.
Pekka Rinne had a great night, stopping all 33 shots that he faced. Pekka has been one of the lone bright spots in the past few games, and he kept it rolling tonight. This is Pekka's third shut-out of the year. In the past, Trotz has been known to reward the goalie who gets the shut-out with the start in the next game. I wouldn't expect that to be the case since the Preds have to turn right around and play Columbus tomorrow. I'd expect Anders Lindback to be in net, and it's really about time. Pekka has been playing well but he has to get rest every once and a while.
The win puts the Preds at 10-8-5 with 25 points, which is good for 12th place in the Western Conference at the moment. The Preds will face Columbus on Wednesday night in Columbus. The Jackets won the first meeting due to a really poor offensive performance by the Preds. Nashville shook up the lines a little bit on Tuesday night and we'll see how well that works going forward.
It was a good win and a much needed win. The Preds really need to put the month of November behind them and focus on having a very good December. They're going to need an extremely strong December to help them get where they want to be come April. Nashville has 14 games in December with a possible 28 points at steak. I'd say they need to get somewhere between 20-22 points and they'll probably be in much better shape going into January. Only 4 games are against divisional foes in December and they all happen to be on the road. The Preds need to especially do well in those games. As far as home and away goes in December, the Preds are dead even. There are 7 home games in the month and 7 away games.
It all starts Wednesday night against Columbus. It's important for the boys to start accumulating points, preferrably two points, this month. It's especially important to get these wins against your divisional rivals like Columbus. The puck drops at 6:00 and this game will be locally televised.