NHL Game Summary - Chicago at Nashville
(Thursday, October 15th)
Final Score: Chicago 3, Nashville 1
Nashville, TN (Sports Network) - Tomas Kopecky's goal early in the second period proved to be the difference, as the Chicago Blackhawks downed the Nashville Predators, 3-1, in a battle between these two Central Division foes at the Sommet Center.
Duncan Keith and Dustin Byfuglien each had a goal for the Blackhawks, who have won four in a row. Brent Seabrook had a pair of assists, while Cristobal Huet stopped 12-of-13 shots for the victors.
Martin Erat scored the lone goal for the Predators, who have lost four straight games. Pekka Rinne turned aside 27-of-30 shots in defeat.
"They blocked a lot of shots, but we missed a lot. We hit posts; we had a three-on-one and missed the net; we had a back-door play that had an open net and Cal O'Reilly missed it. We had chances. A lot of the point shots never got through. They give up the fewest shots in the league right now, and they have the most shots for. This is not a bad hockey team that we played -- this is one of the top hockey teams in the league," Nashville head coach Barry Trotz said.
After a scoreless first period, the Blackhawks lit the lamp at the 2:21 mark of the second. Seabrook's slapper from the right point went off the right post, setting up a rebound. Byfuglien slid the disc into the empty half of the net for a power-play score.
Chicago built a 2-0 lead when Kopecky found the back of the net 28 seconds later. After gaining control of the puck behind their own net, the Predators turned the disc over. Colin Fraser slid a pass to the front of the net for Kopecky, who beat Rinne with a shot.
Nashville cut the deficit in half with a goal at the 3:36 mark of the second. Erat was able to chip a shot from in front of the net past Huet.
Keith's goal at the 7:07 mark of the third put Chicago ahead 3-1. Jonathan Toews passed the disc off to Keith, whose slapper from the left circle beat Rinne.
Nashville's Steve Sullivan was presented before the game with the Bill Masterton Trophy...Chicago's Patrick Sharp had a six-game point streak snapped...The Blackhawks and Predators split six games last year, though Chicago has won nine of the last 13 in the series...The Blackhakws start a four-game homestand on Saturday when they welcome Dallas to town. Nashville starts a five-game road trip on Saturday when they travel to Washington...Prior to the game, Nashville recalled forward Cal O'Reilly from Milwaukee (AHL) and assigned forward Mike Santorelli to Milwaukee.
10/16 01:13:47 ET