The return of Pekka Rinne did not go on as planned Thursday night as many thought that it would. Early on, the struggles were evident. During the first two periods, Rinne allowed 4 goals, some questionable, as the Preds would eventually go down by a score of 5-2. The Preds finally came alive during the third period, but it was too little, too late.
One good outcome from the game was the individual performance by Colin Wilson. Wilson was able to set career bests in goals and points, as it was a bitter-sweet night due to the loss.
The Preds look to rebound as they take on the New York Rangers in an afternoon match-up at Bridgestone Arena.
The New York Rangers (30-15-4) last took on the Boston Bruins. The Rangers were successful against Boston as they defeated the Bruins by a score of 3-2. Rick Nash was able to get his 32nd goal of the season at 05:50 of the 1st period. Derick Brassard (13), Derek Stepan (9) scored in the 2nd period to give the Rangers the win.
On the season, Rick Nash leads the team in points with 48. He is having one of the best seasons of his career. Nash leads the NHL in goals with a league-best 32 goals on the season.
Keys to Watch
Dust it off!
Pekka Rinne did not have his finest performance on Thursday night. Miscommunication with Shea Weber on the 1st goal, redirected pucks, and sloppy play in front contributed to the loss. Rinne was showing some game rust. Being off for over three weeks can be detrimental to a person’s game. Alas!! Rinne had an epic quote for his performance in the post-game interviews.
@DanoFox17: #PekkaRinne admitted to being rusty. Also said “it won’t happen again.” #Predators
25 wins. 2.25 GAA. .922 SV %. That’s difficult to replace. The Rangers will be without their #1 goalie for 3 weeks due to an injury. This will be an opportunity for the Preds to take advantage. Having one of the best goalies in the NHL will give the Preds the ability to capitalize. Cam Talbot will be in net for the Rangers. He has big shoes to fill for the injured, Henrik Lundqvist.
Return of Klein
Kevin Klein was a fan favorite as a Nashville Predator. A 2003 draft pick by Nashville, Klein was traded to the Rangers one year ago. He is having, by FAR, his best offensive season with 8 goals and 10 assists. Klein has flourished in New York and has stepped up his game. It has been good seeing him succeed. Personally, I hated seeing him leave. It will be great having him back at Bridgestone Arena. Will he have a tribute? I hope so.
Saturday night’s afternoon battle will be against two of the NHL’s top tier teams. The puck will drop at 2:00p.m. CST at Bridgestone Arena. For those that can’t make it out, the game will be on FOX Sports Tennessee (pregame at 1:30 p.m. CST) or you can listen live to every play on 102.5 The Game.