For the Nashville perspective, visit On the Forecheck
Gabriel Bourque got the scoring going at 12:31 of the second period for the Predators, then 5:22 later, Dany Heatley tied it at one, extending his team lead in goals to 23 and his team lead in points to 51. Mikko Koivu and Nate Prosser added assists on the Heatley goal. For Koivu it was his 44th point on the season, good for third on the team and in 53 games is a good season total for the Kaptain.
Niklas Backstrom continued to improve after suffering a late season injury, giving up a goal on 24 shots. A .921 save percentage and 2.40 goals against average isn't exactly what you expect from a franchise goaltender (11th and 16th in the NHL respectively) but given the troubles with injury and a brutal defensive corps in front of him, you cannot lay blame for the season at his feet.
You can't fault the level of effort being shown by a defeated team in an apocalyptically bad 2012. They have come out and grabbed hold of the Spoiler title, giving playoff teams fits. Makes you wonder exactly what would have happened had Koivu not missed 27 games with injury.
The Bennett's Chop & Railhouse of the Game:
- Gabriel Bourque (1 G)
- Dany Heatley (1 G)
- Alexander Radulov (shootout winner)
Remember, when you begin and end your night at Bennett's, you're the star! Easy parking, drink and food specials and a free shuttle to and from the Xcel Energy Center. Check them out at http://bennettschopandrailhouse.com/.
- Do the spoilers keep on spoiling? Almost!
- Can the Wild show off for Ryan Suter? Well, they only gave up 1 in regulation, so ... who knows?
- What is it like to watch a real top-flight defensive pairing? The big 2 were on the ice for the Heatley goal, but they're really fun to watch.
- Will Erik Christensen keep the hope alive for next season? 2 PIM, 0 shots in only 10:40 TOI (2nd lowest among forwards), missed in the shootout. Not the way to win a job.
- More comments tonight than last night's ramblings? Fabulous showing by the commentariat tonight. Well done folks.