Nov 3, 2013
The best and worst from Nashville’s 4-3 win over the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday night.
- David Legwand is on an absolute tear. An absolute tear. On Saturday night, Legwand had 2 goals, opening and closing Nashville’s scoring, while spending a season-high 20:18 on the ice. With 7 points in his last 4 games and 5 and his last 2, David Legwand is almost producing at a point per game pace. That’s especially impressive since the Predators have barely been able to produce at a 2 goal per game pace throughout the season. Legwand’s 12 points in 14 games also puts him in a category that no Predator has seen in quite some time…he is currently tied for 39th in the league in scoring. Last season Shea Weber was the lone Predator in the top 100, tied for 100th. After Barry Trotz questioned Legwand’s offensive output, the veteran center has seemingly put his foot on the gas over the last two games.
- Patric Hornqvist tied his career best on Saturday night with a three-point output, assisting on the first three Predator goals. Hornqvist has already equalled his goal output from last season and is just 4 points away from surpassing his point total. His 10 points through 14 games ranks him in a tie for 69th in the NHL in scoring. He also blocked 4 shots along the way.
- Paul Gaustad took 34 faceoffs in this game, winning 18 of them. For comparison’s sake, Nick Spaling has taken 49 faceoffs all season. Gaustad is currently second in the league with a 62.6% faceoff percentage, behind St. Louis’ Vladimir Sobotka, who has a 67.5% faceoff percentage.
- Eric Nystrom scored for the second game in a row, giving him 4 goals on the season. That means that tied for the Nashville Predators lead in goal-scoring is Eric Nystrom. You read that correctly, Eric Nystrom is the Nashville Predators’ leading goal-scorer. Nystrom also laid down 7 hits on Saturday night to move into a tie for 10th in the NHL in hits. Nystrom was compared to Matt Halischuk and Nick Spaling quite often upon his signing, but he’s playing more like Milan Lucic lately.
- Shea Weber also scored his fourth goal of the season to tie Hornqvist, Legwand, and Nystrom for the team lead, while playing a team-high 26:01 and registering 6 hits.
- Mattias Ekholm had never scored a point before last week and now he is in the midst of a three-game scoring streak, picking up an assist on Legwand’s game-winner.
- Seth Jones picked up his 5th assist of the season, which ranks 3rd among all rookies in the NHL. Jones’ 7 points rank 6th among all rookies.
- Nashville has scored 4 goals in the first 2 games of this 7-game jaunt. On Thursday, Nashville put up 40 shots and lost, while on Saturday they put up only 17 shots and won.
- In 3 power play opportunities on Saturday night, Nashville scored twice.
- The Predators blocked 22 Kings shots, including 6 coming off the stick of Jake Muzzin. Kevin Klein led the Predators with 5 blocks.
- Mike Fisher left the game in the second period with a lower-body injury and did not return. He had the second assist on Weber’s goal.
- Matt Hendricks was scratched from the game due to the injury he suffered on Thursday night and has been returned to Nashville for evaluation.
- Victor Bartley was scratched for the second game in a row.
- Gabriel Bourque has yet to score a goal this season and that lack of production saw him earn his second scratch of the year.
- Viktor Stalberg is the only remaining offseason skater acquistion who has not registered a point in a Predators uniform. On Saturday night, he saw 11:50 of ice time and put a shot on net, but so far…no points.
- Filip Forsberg played just 9 shifts and 5:04 on Saturday night. Barry Trotz openly admitted recently that a lot of Forsberg’s issues come from his youth, but still…the Predators were down a forward for half of the game and Forsberg only saw 5 minutes.
- Rich Clune was the victim of a strange call more than anything. After Daniel Carcillo openly kneed Roman Josi in the first period, Clune went after Carcillo. Carcillo was penalized for the kneeing and Nashville should have had a power play, but Clune was hit with an instigator and a 10 minute misconduct, which left the teams at even strength. Rule 46.11 states that, “An instigator of an altercation shall be a player who by his actions or demeanor demonstrates any/some of the following criteria: distance traveled; gloves off first; first punch thrown; menacing attitude or posture; verbal instigation or threats; conduct in retaliation to a prior game (or season) incident; obvious retribution for a previous incident in the game or season.” Obviously, the call was by the book, but since so many fights brew out of retribution for previous incidents in the game (because you can’t have retribution for future incidents), it was strange to see the penalty actually called.
- Carter Hutton earned his third career win, but continued to let in goals and came one bouncing puck away from Anze Kopitar sending the game into overtime. In his last 3 games, Hutton has let in a total of 12 goals. Perhaps next week, Magnus Hellberg will get his first career start.
- For the second game in a row, Nashville gave up a multiple goal lead. On Thursday night, Nashville had a 3-0 lead on Phoenix, but lost 5-4 in the shootout. Tonight, Nashville had a 3-1 lead with 11:19 left in the game, but Los Angeles rallied to tie it.
- Nashville allowed another power play goal, making 4 in their last 10 penalty kill attempts.
- Ryan Ellis and Filip Forsberg obviously cheated at Movember.
- The Kings absolutely owned the faceoff circle, winning 19 of 31 faceoffs that Paul Gaustad was not present for. David Legwand finished the night just 2-for-11, while Mike Fisher was 1-for-7 before leaving the game with an injury.