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Ellis, Predators edge Blackhawks

Feb 15, 2012 - 6:00 AM Nashville, TN (Sports Network) - Ryan Ellis scored the game-winning goal in the third period and added an assist as the Nashville Predators edged the Chicago Blackhawks, 3-2, at Bridgestone Arena.

Ryan Suter and Nick Spaling also scored for Predators, who got 30 saves from Pekka Rinne, helping Nashville end its three-game losing streak.

"It was a really tight game between two desperate teams," Rinne said. "Both teams were ready to go and played well, but we got that big goal at the end from Ellis. We needed this badly."

Bryan Bickell and Marian Hossa lit the lamp and Ray Emery was tagged for three goals on just 19 shots for Chicago, which has now lost nine consecutive games.

Nashville took the lead for good with 5:42 left in regulation when Ellis took a pass off the right wing boards from David Legwand and ripped a slap shot from the right point that squeezed through the legs of Emery.

Chicago pulled Emery with just over a minute remaining, and got some decent shots on net, but was unable to find the tying goal.

Nashville struck first with 1:40 to play in the first period with some excellent passing in the offensive zone.

Mike Fisher corralled a loose disc in the neutral zone and moved into the offensive end on the right wing. Fisher fed it down low to Sergei Kostitsyn, who then fed Suter trailing the play and the defenseman ripped it past Emery to the glove side.

Chicago answered back with just 54 seconds to play on the first period clock when Bickell took a perfect pass in the slot from Jamal Mayers and ripped it past Rinne to tie it at one.

The Preds took the lead at 17:21 of the second frame after Spaling tipped one home off a point shot from Ellis, but Chicago responded at 6:05 of the third period when Hossa wired a quick wrist shot past Rinne from the right circle.

"This was a tough loss," Blackhawks head coach Joel Quenneville said. "We've been finding ways to not come out on top, but tonight looked like we did the things we wanted to do. We wanted to just get it to overtime and see what happened, but that hurt."

Game Notes

Nashville improved to 23-2-3 when scoring first this season...The Predators are 4-1-0 all-time on Valentine?s Day and improved to 18-7-4 at home this season...Both teams went 0-for-3 with the man advantage...The Preds will travel to Detroit and attempt to snap the Wings' 21-game home winning streak on Friday, while Chicago will visit the Eastern Conference-leading New York Rangers on Thursday.