Nashville has some of the stupidest hockey fans I have ever had the unpleasant task of having to listen to (or read on the internet.) It was a sad day when computers became accessible to all, and broadband access made it so any moron with an opinion could flood perfectly good hockey websites and fan pages with nonsense…
Oh come on, you know I’m not talking specifically about YOU… you read my posts because you generally agree with most of the crap I have to say, and you know you wouldn’t think something like “Send Seth Jones To Siberia” when in fact Ryan Ellis made a couple of far worse plays tonight but no one would think to ship him in that general direction.
After forty minutes of play tonight a number of things were abundantly clear.
1. Nashville was playing excellent hockey, but they either couldn’t shoot straight, or shot straight into Blues goaltender Jake Allen.
2. Despite giving up an easy PPG to Blues rookie defenseman Colton Parayko, the Preds absolutely dominated much of the play through the first two periods, and had 31 shots, and by game’s end had (drumroll, please…) … FORTY FIVE SHOTS, SIXTEEN SHOTS BLOCKED, and SEVENTEEN MISSED SHOTS… That’s a nifty 78 pucks launched at Jake Allen… and he surrendered nothing. St. Louis on the other hand took 28 shots, had 13 blocked and only misfired 8 times. That’s 49 attempts at Pekka Rinne. Guess what, THE PREDS DID NOT SUCK TONIGHT. Even Pekka didn’t “suck” tonight, but if that had been Carter Hutton, you’d have him and Seth Jones all wound up in the filming of the Human Centipede IV.
3. The Preds out hit the Blues 26-15. The Preds actually WON 61% of the draws tonight, with Mike Fisher winning 14 of 21!
And so, to come on line and read things like “This was the worst game of the season for the Preds”… well, someone needs to send you to an optometrist, because you’re not watching the game. You must be the guy who yells “SHOOT IT” every time a Pred has the puck along the sideboards with a defender sprawled out two feet in front of him. You must be the person who asks “What’s wrong with Pekka?,” instead of saying, “Wow, I had no idea Jake Allen was so good.” Yeah, Jones was a -1 tonight, and was victimized on the two PPG’s as well, and he was only able to get one of his shots on net tonight, with two HUGE misses, but I’m not so sure he was the culprit specifically. I’m not so sure ANY single Predators player was the culprit tonight. When you move your feet as well as the Blues did on that first power play, you find a guy like Parayko hovering by the back door, and no one was going to stop him on that one. Not Jones, Rinne, or Jackman, Gaustad or Bourque.
Someone claimed the refs had their heads up their asses during this game. Ten minor penalties were called. Two were “coincidental.” That left eight… FIVE to St. Louis and THREE to Nashville. Nashville was 0 for 5 during 8 minutes and 28 seconds of power play time (in which they were also awarded TWO stretches of five on three time) and were credited with NINE shots on goal. St. Louis converted 2 of 3 chances with the man advantage during a stretch of just 3 minutes and 29 seconds. They had four shots on goal, and two went in. Where are the refs at fault? Not calling that one time Neal was tripped? Calling that trip on Neal where his skate made contact with the Blues player, making it look kinda like a trip? Get over it. Nashville had EVERY chance in the world to tie and take the lead in this game when it was 1-0. Even at 2-0 there was plenty of time given how many shots they were launching in Allen’s way. Things went south from there, and it became “the worst game the team has played” for some…
I like the effort, and if it had been Brian Elliot, it may have been a different story, but it was Jake Allen and he ruled the net tonight, outplaying the usually stellar Rinne by a mile and a half.
Colin Wilson was reinstated on the second line at some point midway through the game, moving Salomaki down to line 3, but honestly, since Gaustad’s line has gotten as much ice time as Hodgson’s line, it’s more like line 3B…
Tuesday night the Preds have a chance to get back in the win column as they face off against Ottawa, who don’t boast half the talent the Blues have… and Anderson (see, Craig) should crack if he faces 45 shots. Promise 🙂