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Loss to Carolina makes Nashville winless during home stand

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Dec 6, 2013


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On Thursday night, the Nashville Predators fell to the Carolina Hurricanes 5-2 at Bridgestone Arena.

Carolina’s Jeff Skinner registered a hat trick, while Nashville’s starting goaltender Marek Mazanec was pulled from the game after the second period after allowing four goals in just 13 shots.

Nashville, meanwhile, put up two goals in 22 shots on Carolina netminder Justin Peters.

“We had some good looks, but probably should have scored one or two more,” Predators forward Viktor Stalberg, who scored Nashville’s second goal, said. “We have to find a way to bury our chances.”

The loss marked Nashville’s fourth consecutive loss during their four-game home stand. The Predators finished 0-3-1 in that stretch with losses to the Hurricanes, Canucks, Flyers and Oilers. Nashville takes a brief two-game road stint starting Saturday with games against the Capitals in Washington and the Rangers in New York.

Currently, the Predators sit in last place in the Central Division and 12th out of 14 teams in the Western Conference with 29 points.

“It’s obviously frustrating not getting the points that we want here,” Stalberg said. “We had a good opportunity get back in the standings and get back in the hunt, but we didn’t get the job done. Sometimes it’s good to get on the road a little bit and take your mind off of things. Hopefully we can get two wins here. We have to start getting some points in the games and climbing our way back.”

Carolina’s first goal came just 23 seconds into the game after the Hurricanes forced a turnover in the offensive zone. The second came when the Hurricanes were able to force an odd-man rush. The third came when Roman Josi turned the puck over directly to a Carolina player and created an odd-man rush. The fourth came on the power play, while the fifth was an empty netter.

“I think we were prepared and knew what they were bringing,” Stalberg said. “They were playing well and played well tonight. They took advantage of our mistakes – it’s as simple as that. On the five-on-five, I think we’re the better team out there, but they’re taking advantage or some mistakes and brain farts on our part. It’s as simple as that.”

For Nashville’s part, they had four power play opportunities and failed to capitalize on any of them. The Predators have failed to convert on 14 straight power play attempts. During the four-game home stand, Nashville was 0-for-13 on the power play.

“We have to have the whole team going every night,” Stalberg said. “There’s no easy games here. We know we’re a hard working, blue collar team and that’s how we’re going to win. We can’t play good hockey for 55 minutes or 45 minutes – we have to play for 60. We have to find a way to crawl back in the games and the standings.”

Photo Credit: Sarah Fuqua