On Saturday, the Predators beat the defending Stanley Cup Champions, Saint Louis Blues. This ended a 6 game losing streak for the Predators and it will hopefully build some much needed momentum. The Predators played a fantastic first period and managed to hold the Blues to just two goals.
The Predators have struggled greatly over the last month, losing 7 games and winning just one. The Preds played well against the Blues and they have another shot at them on Monday at home.
The Predators seemed in complete control until late into the 4th period. The game started with a goal by Filip Foresberg just 20 seconds in. Foresberg’s goal was the beginning of a great period for the preds where they scored 3 goals and conceded 1. The second period was uneventful despite a few chances, no goals were scored. In the third period, it seemed that the Blues played with much more energy. After the Blues scored, they pulled their goalie and had a few decent chances but it ultimately lead to a Predators goal.
Here are some key stats from the game:
First Star: Juuse Saros- stopped 24 of 26 shots
Second Star: Filip Forsberg- Goal, 2 shots, +1 rating
Third star: D Roman Josi- 1 Assist, 6 shots, +3 rating
*F Viktor Arvidsson: 1 Assist, left game with lower body injury
F Calle Jarnkrok: 1 Goal (Empty Net), +2 rating
F Colton Sissons: 1 Goal, 4 hits
F Austin Watson: 2 Assists
D Matthias Ekholm: 1 Goal, 3 hits
*only players with negative +/- were Matt Irwin and Dan Hamhuis
Many people began panicking as the Preds continued to lose games. While one win is good, it is not a guaranteed end to the skid. If the Predators can use this game as a turning point, that is great but it is not a certainty. If the Predators can begin winning games and make their way up the central division, I feel great as we move deeper into the season. After such a hot start, the last month has been far below most people’s expectations. The Preds can be a great team but you have to expect every team to breakdown at times as the Preds did over the last month.
After the hot start, it seemed that Matt Duchene fit in perfectly with the Preds. Since then, Duchene has put up few points and has not been nearly as noticeable. I am not concerned about Duchene yet but it will be interesting to see how he progresses as he becomes more comfortable with the team and the play style.
This win was solid but it will only prove important if the Predators can build from it. A second win against the Blues would be great and the fact that it is a divisional game would make it even better. I am not concerned with the Preds but that is what we said for most of last season…