Clarksville, Tn — The Nashville Predators fell 4-1 to the Minnesota Wild, their second straight loss. The Predators had not lost two in a row since February.
This is the first game of a back-to-back, as they travel to Winnipeg for a matchup with the Jets tomorrow night. The Jets have won their last four games and are in search of 100 points.
Nashville got off to a good start as Ryan Johansen put the Preds on the board first, scoring at 8:37 of the first period. He fired a blast from the left circle, then took the rebound off of goalie Devan Dubnyk for the 1-0 lead. Johansen was assisted by P K Subban and Filip Forsberg.
Nashville would take the lead into the first break.
When the Wild returned in the second period, they turned up the pressure and tied the score at 2:50, on Joel Eriksson’s wrist shot that beat Pekka Rinne on the short side.
Nino Niederreiter would extend the Minnesota lead at 13:45 of the second period on his wrist shot, and the score was 2-1.
Jason Zucker made it 3-1 in favor of Minnesota at 1:23 of the third, assisted by Eric Staal.
Zach Parise would give us our final score at 18:19 of the final frame on his “empty netter” to seal the game for the Wild. Minnesota has won three of their last five games and are in third place of the central division.
Nashville was held to only 20 shots on goal and still struggle with staying out of the penalty box.
Head coach Peter Laviolette was ejected from the game at 15:24 of the third period for arguing a call with officials.
It was a HORRIBLE call by the officials.
After a struggle between Nashville’s Scott Hartnell and Minnesota’s Nick Seeler, the two players were sent off with matching minors. Laviolette was angry at the call against Hartnell who clearly didn’t “board” the Minnesota player.
The Predators lost Yannick Weber and Austin Watson who left the game with injuries. Their status is unknown.
Weber left at 6:48 of the first period following a hit from Marcus Foligno and Watson was a “no show” for the third period.
Nashville squares off against their closest central division rivals, the Winnipeg Jets tomorrow night at 6:00pm.