On Thursday, the Predators won a thrilling 6-5 game against the Capitals in Bridgestone Arena. The Capitals held the lead for most of the game but four 3rd period goals propelled the Preds to a win.
The 3 stars of the game:
1. D Matthias Ekholm: game winning goal
2. C Ryan Johansen : Two goals
3. F Matt Duchene: 1 Goal, 1 Assist
The top two lines played a fantastic game yesterday, combing for 4 goals and 8 total assists. The Predators have made many line changes this season. The biggest change has been the Preds shifting from one top line to two. The Predators now basically have lines 1a and 1b. The Predators broke up the JoFa line (Foresberg-Johansen-Arvidsson), and made it into two seperate lines. The signing of Matt Duchene made two top lines very reasonable and they have turned out well so far. It is interesting that Jarnkrok has made his way to the top line but I am not sure how long that will last. I think the third line is very strong, and the fourth line is also good. I did not notice the bottom two lines as much but Bonino scored a goal and the 4th line created many scoring chancess.
Here were the lines from last night:
I thought the defense did not play up to their potential. When a team loses Suter, Girard, Subban, Weber, and more over the last couple seasons, it is hard to have a top tier defense. I believe the Preds still have an extremely strong defense with a great top four. I think Fabbro and Ekholm could be the top pairing on many other teams. One goal was a result of a Fabbro mistake in the defensive zone. Two of the goals were one-timers by Ovechkin on the power play. The rest were even strength goals. The defense played fine but you cannot expect to win most games when you give up 5 goals.
Here were the defensive pairings from last night:
It seemed that the Capitals had the lead throughout the whole game until midway through the 3rd period. The Capitals maintained a 1 goal lead through most of the game and in the 2nd period, they led by 2 for a few minutes. The game was very back and forth but I think the Predators played the better game, especially when it came to the 3rd period.
I am very excited to watch the Power Play for the rest of the season and see how the top 2 lines play. One of the best parts of the season so far has been Matt Duchene. He has 1 goal and 7 assits through 4 games and he has played up to expectations. It is early in the season but the Power Play significantly better, as has the entire offense.
This game was extremely entertaining to watch due to the back and forth play and the high amount of scoring. The Predators have scored 19 goals in the first four games of the season which is very solid. The offseason change from Offense to Defense has proved beneficial so far this season. The offense has looked much more explosive than past years and they are very fun to watch at times.
The Predators are 3-1-0 to start the season. This is nothing too crazy but it is a good start. I think this is a different Preds team then last season, this years team has a high offensive potential.
The Predators played a good game but they need to continue their offensive success if they want to be successful.