Monday, March 30, 2009

84 points and 7th place

Sunday's final: Wing 3 Preds 4
Game winning goal by Ryan Suter. Quite an entertaining game. Back and forth, lots of good chances, and a season ending injury for Erat. 90 seconds into the second period he was fighting for space with Lidstrom in front of the net. Weber shot a blast from the point that caught Marty on the leg. Found out later last night that it's a broken leg for Marty, and he is surely out for the rest of the regular season, and if we make the playoffs, probably a good part of the first round.
Also found out today that Legwand is done for the rest of the regular season. Awful news for the Predators. They've called up Mike Santorelli from Milwaukee. He had good chances while he was here earlier in the season, but we'll need him to play much better, which means he'll be under a lot of pressure in a top 6 role. I want him to do well; he's part of the future of this team and may even have a spot up here next year.
Still can't believe the Preds knocked of the Wings with what equates to 2 top 6 forwards.
We're 2 points behind the Blue Jackets and we head into their barn tomorrow night. We need Pekka to be absolutely outstanding. He can outplay Mason; I've seen him do it. The Blues are one point behind us. Yes, the entire central division is currently in playoff position. How awesome would it be the end the season like that? If we keep winning our games and the Blues win theirs, it could happen.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Dethroning the Kings

Overtime against the Kings in unacceptable in my book. There was no reason for the game to go the way it did. The Predators looked slow. They definitely were not putting forth their best effort against one of the worst teams in the Western conference. If they expect to have any chance against the Wings tonight, they have to come out stronger than that. If not, I expect a murderous game. We know the goal tending for Detroit has been shaky, and we need to take advantage of it. Again, doing so with a depleted lineup.
I'm sure there's at least one Predator thankful for the injuries to our top two centers. Cal O'Reilly is up with the big club. Going to be playing his fifth NHL game, second against the Wings. The first having been that 8-0 tromping about a month ago. Cal scored his first NHL goal last night, and it was awesome to see him get that. The kid was hustling all night and looks like a strong player for the future of this team. Also scoring last night was Shea "Freaking" Weber. This was surprising considering how LA had a man on him at all times. They were not going to let him get open to release any kind of shot. But when he did get a chance, he blasted that puck past Quick. Gotta love a defenseman with 21 goals. Despite the somewhat lazy performance from the Preds, they came out with two points on and overtime power play goal from Sullivan. I'll take the two points and 7th place, but I wish it hadn't have been so nerve wracking.
With St. Louis beating Columbus in a shootout last night, they are tied with Edmonton in points, but the Oilers have the tie breaker so St. Louis is in 9th. Would be awesome if the Predators and Blues would win today and Edmonton lose to Minnesota. That would put the entire Central division in the playoffs. Although Minnesota losing is probably better for the Predators because it would almost assure them being out of it. The Preds close their season out in St. Paul, and it would be nice to not have them fighting tooth and nail to still make it in. Suck it Liepold! Suck it Zidlicky!
As for Detroit, they got embarrassed the other night, being shut out by the Islanders at home. Sobering stuff right there. Osgood (Osnotsogood) will be in net for the Wings, and as I'm writing this, Trotz hasn't made his decision as to who will be in net for the Predators. Pekka has looked tired these past few games, and I think it would be wise to give him a game off and hope Ellis comes in and plays strong. We have crucial games with Chicago and Columbus coming up, and I think we'll need Pekka to be at his best. Giving him the Wings game off could be a good decision. Ellis is capable of making awesome saves and stealing games. We have to hope that he can do that today. I believe he can. He knows what playoffs mean to this team; he's in the locker room. I think it's time for Dan to have a chance, and what time is better than the second game of a B2B with the Wings?
Side note: Lilja is still out for Detroit from the ass whooping that Weber put on him about a month ago. Awsomeness.
Puck drops at the Joe in two hours.
Let's go Preds!

Friday, March 27, 2009

Shark bait

If you had told me at this time yesterday that the Predators would beat the Sharks 3-2 in regulation without Arnott and Legwand and that Greg Zanon would score the game winning goal, I would have laughed in your face. Today, that is a reality. It really happened. I went into the game last night telling myself that if it was that bad I would leave after the second and go home to study for my test at 8am today. With the score at 3-2 at the end of the second, I stayed planted in my seat at the top of the arena. And I am glad I did. What an exciting third period of hockey. Back and forth chances, stupid penalites, and a battle of the goaltenders. I am glad I stayed (and the test ended up going fine). The Detroit 8-0 blowout was amazing, but this game was hard fought the whole way through and it really showed the heart this team is playing with. Whatever was said in that locker room in the first intermission really turned it on. The Predators played a very well rounded game. They had good passes, which is out of character for a team I have been screaming at for months for their passes to each others skates. I walked out of the arena with a smile and woke up with one too. It was a good night of playoff style hockey in the music city. And I can't imagine having been anywhere else.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

And we sit in 9th

How fitting that the day after I blog about injuries David Legwand takes a deflected puck to the face at practice. He left practice for X-rays and is now doubtful for tomorrow night against San Jose. We just lost, arguably, our best player for the past month or so. It's not making the fact that we lost to the Ducks last night any better. The game at least went to OT, so we got a point. But that was a crucial game we had to win at home. Honestly, we need to beat San Jose tomorrow and the Kings on Saturday. Do that, and this team is back in playoff contention. Get less than 4/4 points and things start to look ugly. With the exception of St. Louis winning last night, every game went the right way for us. We just couldn't do it ourselves. Was an odd game; could tell that neither team wanted to be the first one to make a mistake. As soon as we did though, Anaheim capitalized. If it wasn't for Weber's blast on the power play, that game would have ended in a regulation loss. The Preds played a good third period, but looked off for the first two periods. And the crowd reflected that; didn't really get into it until Weber tied it. Playoff type game, yes. Playoff type crowd, no.
Will be interesting to see if a call-up is made before the game tomorrow. Would really love to see Santorelli get another shot. The kid has been awesome for Milwaukee, and with the right line mates I think he can do some offensive things here in Nashville. However, calling someone up and putting them on a line with Smithson and Tootoo and then having Fiddler center the first line is idiotic, which probably means that's what will happen if Legwand can't play. As nice a guy as Fiddler is, I just hate seeing him getting time on the top two lines. It forces him to take dumb penalties because he is so outmatched skill wise. And pleas for the love of God, don't put him in the shoot out again. He has ONE move, and everyone knows what it is. Stop the madness.
Time to move on and get ready for San Jose tomorrow. Minus Legwand, this is nearly impossible. With Legwand, this is nearly impossible. The Sharks are just so big and physical that they can come in and beat teams down. We have to come out firing and not let them take it to us. Here's to hoping it's a battle.

Monday, March 23, 2009


This part of the season is where injuries start the creep up. Lots of players fight through them and continue to fight with their teams to make the playoffs. However, some injuries can't be played through. Arnott is fighting a concussion right now, and that's not something to mess with, and it can't be rushed. The Predators should be getting Bonk back tomorrow night against the Ducks.
Injuries are helping the Predators too. Koivu is out for Minnesota, which makes it a little tougher for them. If they struggle and lose some games, we can gain some ground for our playoff run. You never want to see guys get hurt, but some good things can come out of it for other teams.
Let's just hope the Preds stay relatively healthy because we're going to need all the guys being able to give 100% every night if we intend on playing past the first week of April.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Hockey blogging

Decided to make a separate blog for my hockey thoughts.
The Predators have been gone for a week and a half. While this has been GREAT for my wallet and gas tank, I've missed them terribly. They had an extremely successful west coast trip. Grabbed 6 out of 8 points. Taking the Ducks and Sharks to OT. Didn't think they played their best hockey. Actually, I thought they looked sloppy against everyone except San Jose, which just so happened to be the second night of a B2B.
As I type this, we sit in 8th place in the West. We haven't played since Thurdsay night and don't play again until Tuesday. Definitely has been a lot of scoreboard watching going on around Smashville. We can't do anything as far as playoffs are concerned except win our own games. We have to do this for ourselves. Relying on other teams to beat the right teams is not an option. If we expect to go past the first round ever, this team has to learn what grit is. We have to play through March and April like it is the playoffs.
Still being in college and working part time has made money tight, but I'll do whatever it takes to pay for playoff tickets, hopefully beyond the first round.
I'm going to make every effort to keep this updated because I have yet to find another blog by a chick about the Predators.