Thursday, March 31, 2011

Preds Leave Mile High City Victorious

The Nashville Predators held on to defeat the Colorado Avalanche by a 3-2 score on Thursday night in Denver. The Preds had another lackluster 3rd period with only 4 shots on goal to Colorado's 15. However, the Preds were able to hold on and come out with a much needed two points.

In the 1st period, Nashville came out with a pretty good pace of play. The Preds outshot the Avs 12 to 9 in the period, and got a goal from Colin Wilson to put them up 1-0. Blake Geoffrion cycled the puck behind the net to Matt Halischuk, who made a pretty backhand pass to Wilson in front of the net.

There is one word to describe the 2nd period: Eventful. The Preds took a 2-0 lead when Jordin Tootoo tipped in a Cody Franson snapshot from the point. Things got scary for Nashville after that. On the power-play, Shea Weber unloaded an absolute bomb of a shot right into Martin Erat. Erat went straight off of the ice and back into the locker room. He would return, however, and have a big impact on the game. Jordin Tootoo was also hurt when he was hit by John-Michael Liles along the boards. He didn't return and apparently has an "upper-boy injury".

In the 3rd, the Preds got a goal by Martin Erat on the power-play to give them a 3-0 lead. However, the situation would quickly become hairy. Paul Stastny put in a wrist shot to pull the Avalanche within two. With 1:02 remaining in the 3rd, the Avalanche made a game out of it when David Jones shot one that found it's way past Pekka Rinne through a scrum of bodies in front. Colorado ran out of time, and didn't manage to complete the comeback.

With the win, Nashville moves back up into 6th position in the Western Conference standings. Also, they are just four points behind the Central Division leading Detroit Red Wings, which makes Saturday's game against them the biggest regular season game between Nashville and Detroit in the history of the franchise.

Nashville still had trouble in the 3rd period, which has been a troubling trend all year long. They have got to correct that problem soon. Against a team like Detroit, that will be the difference in the game. It was on Tuesday night against Vancouver.

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