for this game

Vokoun, quick strikes held Predators stop skid

Mar 25, 2007 - 6:29 AM
EDMONTON, Alberta (Ticker) -- Tomas Vokoun got the Nashville Predators out of their funk.

Vokoun posted his fifth shutout of the season and the Predators scored goals 25 seconds apart in the second period en route to a 4-0 victory over the woeful Edmonton Oilers in the opener of a home-and-home series.

Peter Forsberg continued his impressive play against the Oilers, registering two assists for Nashville (48-21-7), which had lost the first two games (one in a shootout) of the three-game road trip.

"Every time you lose you don't want to get on a slide, especially right before the playoffs," Vokoun said. "The standings are so close we didn't want to fall back. We've been on the top of our division for the whole year and we want to get that home advantage in the playoffs, so two points here is worth as much as two points anywhere else.

The victory moved the Predators within one of the franchise record and two points ahead of the Detroit Red Wings (45-19-11) for the top spot in both the Central Division and Western Conference.

"We grabbed one of the first four points (on the road trip) so I think it was great for us to get the win tonight so we can stay among the top teams," Forsberg said. "Now we can go home with a little confidence and play these guys again.

"We played some tough teams in the last couple of games but it was great to finish off the trip with three points instead of one."

Nashville also pulled even with Buffalo (48-20-7) in the race for the Presidents' Trophy.

Vokoun stopped 26 shots for his 21st career blanking, making 12 saves in the first period, eight in the second and six in the third.

"I thought we came out and played OK," Nashville coach Barry Trotz said. "But we were able to get good goaltending, got a timely goal right off the bat. We had a stretch of about 10-12 minutes where we didn't respect the lead, that we had and we tried to force some things that aren't really natural and gave up some chances."

Vokoun improved to 5-9-2 lifetime against Edmonton, which ended its home season on a down note.

"It's frustrating. You want to finish off the season on a positive note and leave the fans something to be happy about," Edmonton's Fernando Pisani said. "Obviously it wasn't the outcome we wanted. We wanted the victory and we didn't even get any goals. We didn't want to finish off on a losing note in our own rink. Our fans have been great to us during this stretch and we wanted to give them something to cheer about."

Rookie Alexander Radulov opened the scoring 4:28 into the contest. At 6:08 of the second session, defenseman Shea Weber doubled the lead with a power-play tally, his 16th goal of the season.

Forsberg, who was acquired from Philadelphia at the trade deadline, assisted on both goals, giving him 58 points in 37 career games against Edmonton.

"I think Peter is getting more momentum with our team," Trotz said.

Moments after Weber's goal, blue-liner Ryan Suter netted his eighth of the season, a shot the trickled through goaltender Jussi Markkanen for a 3-0 lead.

"The third goal goal really killed them," Trotz said. "The hockey gods even things out a bit. That was a fortunate (goal) for us but one that probably really hurt the Oilers."

Edmonton native Vernon Fiddler capped the scoring 2:38 into the third.

"It's almost like you want to play a little bit harder because you watched that team growing up," Fiddler said. "It's fun to be out there, that's the most important thing, and you're looking around the stands at the banners and stuff and it sends goose bumps up and down your body."

Markkanen stopped 22 shots for the Oilers, who have lost 13 of 14 and been shut out four times since the trade deadline.

The clubs meet again Tuesday in Nashville.








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    NASHVILLE 1 2 1 4
    EDMONTON 0 0 0 0 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NAS - ALEXANDER RADULOV 15 (PETER FORSBERG, VERNON FIDDLER)
    4:28
    2ND PRD: NAS - (PP) SHEA WEBER 16 (PETER FORSBERG, KIMMO TIMONEN)
    6:08
    NAS - RYAN SUTER 8 (DAVID LEGWAND, JERRED SMITHSON) 6:33
    3RD PRD: NAS - VERNON

    Mar 25 12:26 AM


  • NHL
    NASHVILLE 4
    EDMONTON 0
    3RD PRD: NAS - VERNON FIDDLER 11 (MAREK ZIDLICKY, ALEXANDER RADULOV)
    2:38

    Predators vs. OilersMar 24 11:55 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    NASHVILLE 1 2 3
    EDMONTON 0 0 0 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NAS - ALEXANDER RADULOV 15 (PETER FORSBERG, SHEA WEBER) 4:28
    2ND PRD: NAS - (PP) SHEA WEBER 16 (PETER FORSBERG, KIMMO TIMONEN)
    6:08
    NAS - RYAN SUTER 8 (DAVID LEGWAND, MAREK ZIDLICKY) 6:33
    SHOTS ON GOAL:

    Mar 24 11:34 PM


  • NHL
    NASHVILLE 3
    EDMONTON 0
    2ND PRD: NAS - RYAN SUTER 8 (DAVID LEGWAND, MAREK ZIDLICKY) 6:33

    Predators vs. OilersMar 24 11:09 PM


  • NHL
    NASHVILLE 2
    EDMONTON 0
    2ND PRD: NAS - (PP) SHEA WEBER 16 (PETER FORSBERG, KIMMO TIMONEN) 6:08

    Predators vs. OilersMar 24 11:08 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    NASHVILLE 1 1
    EDMONTON 0 0 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NAS - ALEXANDER RADULOV 15 (PETER FORSBERG, SHEA WEBER) 4:28
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    NAS 10 10
    EDM 12 12
    GOALIES: NAS - TOMAS VOKOUN

    Mar 24 10:42 PM


  • NHL
    NASHVILLE 1
    EDMONTON 0
    1ST PRD: NAS - ALEXANDER RADULOV 15 (PETER FORSBERG, SHEA WEBER) 4:28

    Predators vs. OilersMar 24 10:17 PM