NHL Game Summary - Nashville at Phoenix
(Tuesday, January 18th)
Final Score: Nashville 5, Phoenix 2
Glendale, AZ (Sports Network) - J.P. Dumont registered his fourth career hat trick to lead the Nashville Predators to a 5-2 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes.
Patric Hornqvist scored the other two goals for the Predators, who have won eight of their last 10 games overall and moved into sole possession of second place in the Central Division, two points ahead of idle Chicago.
Pekka Rinne finished with 32 saves in the win.
"We played sloppy, but Rinne was outstanding," said Predators head coach Barry Trotz. "As the game went on, we got better and better."
Radim Vrbata and Lee Stempniak scored for Phoenix, which has dropped two straight on the heels of a four-game win streak. Ilya Bryzgalov yielded all five goals against 21 shots in the losing effort.
"They played a solid game and they made it tough on us," said Stempniak. "We didn't do enough things right, and in the end, they outplayed us."
With the score tied 2-2 after the opening 20 minutes, Nashville took control thanks to three unanswered goals the rest of the way.
Dumont's second goal of the game, at 11:25 of the second stanza, gave the visitors a 3-2 lead. A one-timer from above the right circle by Martin Erat was saved by Bryzgalov, but the rebound was punched home by Dumont from a sharp angle at the left post.
With 2:25 remaining before the second intermission, Dumont completed his hat trick and notched his ninth goal of the campaign. Dumont started the play with a cross-ice pass from the right side, and ended it with an easy tap-in after he was all alone at the near post following a muffed give-and-go in the slot.
"It's definitely nice, but at this point in my career, it's all about winning games and having success in the playoffs," said Dumont, who downplayed his hat trick.
The only goal of the final stanza was Hornqvist's 15th marker. A turnover by the Coyotes in their defensive zone led to the puck being corralled by Hornqvist, and he moved into the lower portion of the right circle and lasered home a wrist shot with 5:31 to play.
The first period saw both teams score twice. Dumont opened the scoring at 8:16 and Hornqvist followed on the very next shift with a goal only 12 seconds later.
However, Phoenix responded. Vrbata's power-play tally at 10:31 cut the Coyotes' deficit in half before Stempniak's 11th goal of 2010-11 at 14:01 knotted the contest.
Dumont's last three-goal game happened on November 12, 2001 in a 5-3 Buffalo win at Florida...This was the second installment of Nashville's current six- game road trip...Nashville halted a three-game skid in Phoenix...The Preds upped their record against the Pacific Division to 8-5-0 this season.
01/19 00:40:27 ET