A scoreless game going into the final 5 minutes of the third period, a collective fire was lit on each respective bench for both teams as the floodgates opened for goals. Washington took the lead with 4:46 left in the game, only to give it up 28 seconds later and see the Predators score with 25 seconds left (including an empty netter 5 seconds later) to give Nashville a huge 3-1 win over the Eastern Conference powerhouse Washington Capitals
Powerplay – 0 for 2, 0%
Penalty Kill – 3 for 3, 100%
Best Play of the Game: Colin Wilson takes a puck straight into the offensive zone with the clock ticking under 40 seconds to go in the final frame. Wilson finds Erat low behind the net, who then drags Vokoun out just enough to pass it back to Wilson who deposits it in the back of the net to give Nashville a 2-1 lead with 25 seconds to go.
Worst Play of the Game: Mike Fisher comes off the bench and screens Pekka Rinne just enough for Troy Brouwer to slide a puck to the top shelf past Rinne to give the Capitals a 1-0 lead at 15:14 of the third.
My Three Stars:
#1: – Pekka Rinne – 39 saves, most of which were just classic Pekka Rinne-type saves. Full marks for Rinne tonight as he kept Nashville in this one
#2: – Colin Wilson – 1 goal on the night, but completely made the majority of the play that gave the Predators the lead late in the game
#3: – Martin Erat – 1 goal/1 assist/+3, Erat had many chances on the night and finally cashed in late in the game to tie it, while assisting on the game winner.
After 55 minutes of back and forth hockey, primarily a goaltending duel of 2 generations of Predators goaltenders, the goals started to finally come through. Washington’s Troy Brouwer was able to beat Pekka Rinne top shelf at 15:14 of the third period to get the Capitals on the board and almost suck all of the life out of the Bridgestone Arena.
However, Nashville wasn’t prepared to lose another home game in front of their fans. Shea Weber took a Mike Fisher pass deep into the offensive zone and passed it clear across the crease to find Martin Erat for an easy tap in 28 seconds later to tie the game at 1.
After a standing ovation from the Nashville faithful, the Predators looked for a way to end it in regulation. Colin Wilson took an errant puck down the left side of the board and held it until Martin Erat could get into place. Passing it off to Erat behind the Capitals net, Erat drew out Vokoun enough to where Colin Wilson could be the recipient of a slick pass and steamed it to the back of an open net.
Shea Weber collected the empty netter with a slapshot 5 seconds later and Nashville got the come-from-behind win 3-1 over the Capitals, a team that hadn’t beaten in Nashville since the 2003-2004 season.
Stay tuned to The Predatorial on Thursday morning for the gameday preview of the Maple Leafs game!
Stay frosty, friends.