for this game

Predators extend Blackhawks' skid behind Legwand

Jan 21, 2007 - 6:11 AM
NASHVILLE, Tennessee (Ticker) -- The Chicago Blackhawks showed plenty of resilience, but David Legwand displayed some of his own.

Legwand recorded his first career hat trick and added an assist as the Nashville Predators pulled away in the third period for a 6-3 triumph over the Blackhawks, who have lost a season-high nine in a row.

Entering without a win since topping St. Louis on January 2, Chicago battled back from an early 2-0 deficit with two quick goals midway through the first period and forged a 3-3 tie on defenseman Duncan Keith's first of the season 99 seconds into the third.

"We played with a lot of heart," Blackhawks coach Denis Savard said. "The guys battled, and that's all we can ask for."

However, Legwand put Nashville ahead for good eight minutes into the final session and, after captain Kimmo Timonen created breathing room with 1:59 remaining, capped his first three-goal performance with an empty-netter in the final minute.

"It's nice to get one, and I'll move on from there," Legwand said.

"It's great for him to get a hat trick," linemate Martin Erat said. "Our line has played very well the last 10 games or so."

The last tally was Legwand's 97th career goal, making him the all-time leader in franchise history. The second overall pick in 1998, Legwand entered the game two tallies behind former Predator Scott Walker.

"He's our leading scorer in team history, so that's really good," Nashville coach Barry Trotz said. "He's played really, really, really well."

Erat had a goal and two assists, Paul Kariya set up a pair of tallies and Chris Mason made 27 saves for the Predators, who have won eight of nine and enter the All-Star break atop the NHL with 71 points.

"We're the No. 1 team in the league right now, so obviously we can't look back or slow down," Legwand said. "Teams are right behind us and we want to finish with the best record. We want to prove we are going to be there for a long time."

"The way we started the season 0-3, now we lead by a few points," Timonen said. "It means we've done something good. It's a nice feeling. You can't take that away from us now."

Martin Havlat registered a goal and an assist for Chicago, which has dropped three straight against Nashville after winning the first three meetings of the season.

"It's always no fun when you are losing," Havlat said. "It's much more fun when you are winning. I just want to win like everyone else here."

Shortly after Mason stopped Havlat on a shorthanded breakaway, Erat gave the Predators a 1-0 lead at 7:14 of the first period by scoring from alone on the right side of the net.

Just 20 seconds later, J.P. Dumont doubled the advantage by grabbing a loose puck on the doorstep and burying it for his 10th goal.

But Havlat would not be denied during a power play just over two minutes afterward as he converted a cross-crease pass by Bryan Smolinski from the right side at 9:37. Before Nashville could recover, Craig MacDonald forged a tie with his second of the season.

"We had some bad bounces, and that didn't help us," Havlat said. "But everybody was working, and that's the most important thing. What we can do is work hard and everything else will take care of itself."

Attempting to clear the puck from the right side of the crease, Mason put it right on the stick of MacDonald, who fired it into an open net from the faceoff circle nine seconds after Havlat's tally to make it 2-2.

"I made a terrible play in the first period and it kind of gave Chicago some momentum," Mason said. "But the guys fought back and played hard to get the momentum back."

Late in the second period, Erat sent a backhander just wide of the left goalpost. However, Legwand was there to corral the puck and tuck it in with 4:52 to go, giving the Predators the lead.

Keith drew Chicago even early in the third with his first goal in 55 games, a wrist shot from the high slot that beat Mason to the stick side.

"I knew they were going to come out and be real hard and fast since they are trying to get the gorilla off of their back," Trotz said. "They put a lot of emphasis on this game."

But Legwand restored Nashville's lead 6 1/2 minutes later by tapping in a rebound near the right post.

"We've been moving the puck well and scoring goals, and that's what we need to keep doing," Legwand said. "We need to do it in the playoffs, too. We can't just do it in the regular season and expect to be done with it."

Timonen made it a two-goal bulge with a wrister from the left hash marks while on the power play.








  • ------------------------------------
    Chicago
    2 0 1 --3
    Nashville 2 1 3 --6
    ------------------------------------

    FIRST PERIOD -- Scoring: 1, Nashville, Martin Erat 10 (David Legwand,
    Paul Kariya), 7:14. 2, Nashville, Jean-Pierre Dumont 10 (Jason Arnott,
    Greg Zanon), 7:34. 3, Chicago, Martin Havlat 15 (power play) (Bryan
    Smolinski, Radim Vrbata), 9:37. 4, Chicago, Craig M

    Jan 20 10:37 PM


  • ------------------------------------
    Chicago
    2 0 1 --3
    Nashville 2 1 3 --6
    ------------------------------------

    FIRST PERIOD -- Scoring: 1, Nashville, Martin Erat 10 (David Legwand,
    Paul Kariya), 7:14. 2, Nashville, Jean-Pierre Dumont 10 (Jason Arnott,
    Greg Zanon), 7:34. 3, Chicago, Martin Havlat 15 (power play) (Bryan
    Smolinski, Radim Vrbata), 9:37. 4, Chicago, Craig M

    Blackhawks vs. PredatorsJan 20 10:37 PM


  • NHL
    CHICAGO 3
    NASHVILLE 5 0:51 LEFT, 3RD PRD

    Blackhawks vs. PredatorsJan 20 10:30 PM


  • NHL
    CHICAGO 3
    NASHVILLE 4
    3RD PRD: NAS - DAVID LEGWAND 17 (JEAN-PIERRE DUMONT, MARTIN ERAT) 8:01

    Blackhawks vs. PredatorsJan 20 10:10 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    CHICAGO 2 0 2
    NASHVILLE 2 1 3 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NAS - MARTIN ERAT 10 (DAVID LEGWAND, PAUL KARIYA) 7:14
    NAS - JEAN-PIERRE DUMONT 10 (JASON ARNOTT, GREG ZANON) 7:34
    CHI - (PP) MARTIN HAVLAT 15 (BRYAN SMOLINSKI, RADIM VRBATA)
    9:37
    CHI - CRAIG MACDONALD 2

    Jan 20 9:38 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    CHICAGO 2 0 2
    NASHVILLE 2 1 3 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NAS - MARTIN ERAT 10 (DAVID LEGWAND, PAUL KARIYA) 7:14
    NAS - JEAN-PIERRE DUMONT 10 (JASON ARNOTT, GREG ZANON) 7:34
    CHI - (PP) MARTIN HAVLAT 15 (BRYAN SMOLINSKI, RADIM VRBATA)
    9:37
    CHI - CRAIG MACDONALD 2

    Blackhawks vs. PredatorsJan 20 9:38 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    CHICAGO 2 2
    NASHVILLE 2 2 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NAS - MARTIN ERAT 10 (DAVID LEGWAND, PAUL KARIYA) 7:14
    NAS - JEAN-PIERRE DUMONT 10 (JASON ARNOTT, GREG ZANON) 7:34
    CHI - (PP) MARTIN HAVLAT 15 (BRYAN SMOLINSKI, RADIM VRBATA)
    9:37
    CHI - CRAIG MACDONALD 2

    Jan 20 8:45 PM


  • NHL
    CHICAGO 2
    NASHVILLE 2 3:32 LEFT, 1ST PRD

    Blackhawks vs. PredatorsJan 20 8:40 PM


  • NHL
    CHICAGO 1
    NASHVILLE 2
    1ST PRD: CHI - (PP) MARTIN HAVLAT 15 (BRYAN SMOLINSKI, RADIM VRBATA)
    9:37

    Blackhawks vs. PredatorsJan 20 8:29 PM


  • NHL
    CHICAGO 0
    NASHVILLE 2
    1ST PRD: NAS - JEAN-PIERRE DUMONT 10 (JASON ARNOTT, GREG ZANON) 7:34

    Blackhawks vs. PredatorsJan 20 8:26 PM