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Patten’s Plus Minus: Nashville Predators at Pittsburgh Penguins

PattensPlusMinus

Nov 16, 2013


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The best and worst from Nashville’s 4-1 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Friday night.

Plus:

  • Carter Hutton appeared in relief of Marek Mazanec in the third period for the Predators and stopped all eight shots he faced.  Considering the disastrous time that Hutton has been having in goal, coming into a game for a brief period of time and turning away all shots headed his way should be a small boost of confidence. He will likely need that confidence on Saturday night, as Barry Trotz will probably put him in net against his former organization, the Chicago Blackhawks. While Hutton finishes the road trip with a horrific save percentage of .857 and with a GAA of 4.17, he at least was able to end the stretch without a seemingly endless stream of goals headed his way.
  • Gabriel Bourquea player who is not an enforcer – opened the scoring for the Predators at 2:28 of the first period. For 10 minutes, Nashville held a lead for the first time since defeating Colorado on November 6.
  • Mike Fisher returned to the Nashville lineup for the first time since injuring himself against the Kings on November 2.

Minus:

  • It had been about a month since a beat writer tried to trade Shea Weber to his local team, so it was overdue. Prior to the game, Edmonton writer Jim Matheson began another Shea Weber trade rumor by posting this blog at the Edmonton Sun. Matheson gracefully gets around the question of why the Predators would trade a player immediately after forking over $25 million for him by simply not even bringing it up. Instead, he lists off a list of players that Edmonton would seemingly be unwilling to give up in exchange for Weber (i.e. the good ones). It’s an interesting read, but it’s one of those posts by a professional writer that was clearly done to drive hits – there’s nothing to it.
  • At this point, it’s fairly safe to say that Nashville has a major, major issue in the goaltending department. Marek Mazanec allowed four Penguins goals in 25 shots, raising his GAA to 3.62 and lowering his save percentage to .890. Granted, not all of those goals were his fault, but if the team is not going to play like there is an experienced, NHL-caliber goaltender in net behind them, then the team needs to seek out an experienced, NHL-caliber goaltender to take the reins while Pekka Rinne is out. If anything, putting Mazanec in goal and having the same results in goal as Hutton did shows that Hutton was not necessarily the problem.
  • The Predators were shut down on the power play yet again, failing to score on two tries. The Predators have now gone 14 straight power plays without scoring a goal.
  • Nashville, who was leading the NHL in faceoff percentage, finished the game 19 of 47 from the dot. Mike Fisher only won three of his 12 draws while David Legwand only won five of 15.
  • Eric Nystrom had to be helped off of the ice after his second period fight with Tanner Glass. While there were concerns that Nystrom had hit his head on the ice, Nystrom tweeted after the game that he had been hit in a strange place behind the earhole in his helmet.
  • Nashville allowed one Penguins goal on four power play attempts.
  • For the first time in four games, the Predators actually started the game with the lead. However, for the first time this season, they lost a game in regulation after scoring first. Nashville is now 7-1-2 when scoring the first goal.
  • In the last four games, the Predators have been outscored 17-2.
  • Nashville finishes the longest road trip in franchise history with five of a possible 14 points. The Predators earned all of those points in the first three games of the road trip.
  • Another one-goal performance dropped Nashville’s scoring average yet again. The team’s scoring average has dropped to 2.05 goals per game.
  • After being returned from Milwaukee, Filip Forsberg was given just 9:48 of ice time.
  • Matt Hendricks, Victor Bartley and Rich Clune were healthy scratches.

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