The Detroit Red Wings have actual games to play before the trade deadline–4 games over the course of only 6 nights.
The Wings host the Nashville Predators this evening (7:30 PM EST on FSD/FS Tennessee/97.1 FM) hoping to match their effort in Saturday night’s 3-1 victory over the Preds.
NHL.com’s Robby Stanley chronicled the Predators’ win…
Viktor Arvidsson scored two goals, and the Nashville Predators defeated the Ottawa Senators 5-2 at Bridgestone Arena on Monday.
Ryan Ellis had a goal and an assist, and Pekka Rinne made 36 saves for the Predators (35-14-9, 79 points), who had lost two straight and moved into a tie with the Winnipeg Jets for first place in the Central Division.
Roman Josi gave the Predators a 1-0 lead at 9:28 of the first period when he one-timed a pass from Ellis past a screened Anderson on the power play.
Arvidsson made it 2-0 at 14:32. Ryan Johansen fed a no-look backhand pass to Arvidsson, who scored at the right post.
Jean-Gabriel Pageau scored for the Senators to make it 2-1 at 16:03 with a power-play goal. Ellis made it 3-1 at 6:34 of the second period on the power play with a one-timer from the top of the left face-off circle.
Max McCormick cut the lead to 3-2 at 8:05 on a wrist shot on the rush. Arvidsson gave the Predators a 4-2 lead at 10:00. Filip Forsberg forced a turnover to the left of the goal, and fed Arvidsson with a backhand pass, who beat Anderson from in front.
Craig Smith extended the lead to 5-2 at 8:15 of the third period on a wrist shot.
As did the Associated Press…
The Predators recorded two power-play goals and scored on the man advantage in their second straight game after going six games without converting on the power play. Screens by Colton Sissons set up goals by defensemen Josi and Ellis.
“The power play played great today and got us a couple of goals, and I think we created a lot of chances,” Arvidsson said. “I think we simplified it and just started shooting pucks, and getting net-front presences. Siss had two big screens today and that results in two goals, so that’s just simple hockey.”
Arvidsson fired a game-high nine shots on goal.
“He was really good,” Predators coach Peter Laviolette said. “I mean he was working, constantly in motion, constantly moving towards the puck or working to generate, working in the battles.”
Pekka Rinne made 36 saves to earn his 30th win of the season. The Predators improved to 12-3-3 in their last 18 games.
Ottawa hung around for portions of the game, but Nashville was always one step ahead, and after Preds Head Coach Peter Laviolette said his team “simply needed to find the back of the net,” the group responded loud and clear.
“We took a step in the right direction,” Laviolette said. “I thought last game (a 3-1 loss), Detroit played really hard and therefore it’s difficult to dictate the entire game. I’ll say the same thing tonight. I thought Ottawa played an aggressive game. They’re fast off the attack, you have to be sure of what you’re doing defensively, but for the most part, I thought our guys were pretty competitive and pretty fast. We were on our toes tonight.”
“I think we played great,” Arvidsson said. “I think we played an attack-mentality hockey. Our D was up in the play and we shot the puck a lot. [I] felt like it was a great 60 minutes.”
“We just kept it simple and tried to shoot a lot of pucks,” Nashville Captain Roman Josi said. “Sometimes with the power play that’s just how it goes. Sometimes you play really well and you have a lot of chances, but they don’t go in. Sometimes you don’t do anything different, but you get two power-play goals. That’s just how it goes. You have to make sure you don’t get frustrated and keep it simple.”
Here’s NHL.com’s Predators-Senators highlight clip:
The Wings have owned the Predators of late, winning seven in a row from Nashville, including the last three in Detroit, although this will be the first visit by the Preds to new Little Caesars Arena.
“That’s a fast team over there,” Predators defenseman Ryan Ellis said after Saturday’s loss to the Wings. “They worked just as hard, and they earned that win.”
Nashville (35-14-9) got back on the winning track Monday, whipping the Ottawa Senators 5-2 to move into a first-place tie in the Central Division with the Winnipeg Jets.
Detroit is 2-5-1 in its last eight home games. Mike Green, who leads all Detroit defensemen with 29 points and who is the subject on trade speculation as the Feb. 26 NHL trade deadline fast approaches, has missed the last two games due to an upper-body injury.
The moves began for the Wings on Monday, as they dealt goaltender Petr Mrazek to the Philadelphia Flyers in exchange for a conditional fourth-round pick in the 2018 draft and a conditional third-round pick in the 2019 draft. The Wings will also retain half of what remains to be paid out on Mrazek’s $4.15 million salary.
Detroit will obviously start Jimmy Howard and recall Jared Coreau to back up Howard…as to who plays for the Red Wings on Tuesday night, if Ken Holland is moving and making deals, that’s hard to say now.