for this game

Stevenson leads Thrashers over Predators

Sep 26, 2008 - 4:17 AM By Jim Diamond PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

NASHVILLE, Tennessee (Ticker) -- Grant Stevenson scored two goals and set up another while Ondrej Pavelec made 36 saves to lead the Atlanta Thrashers to a 4-2 victory over the Nashville Predators in the preseason opener for both teams on Thursday.

Defenseman Garnet Exelby and Junior Lessard also tallied while blue-liner Grant Lewis notched a pair of assists for Atlanta.

Signed as a free agent in the offseason, Stevenson is making a case to return to the NHL after playing the last two seasons in the American Hockey League. His only NHL experience came in 2005-06 with the San Jose Sharks.

Exelby got Atlanta on the board 4:32 into the first period, and Stevenson extended the lead just over two minutes later with a power-play goal. With the Thrashers clinging to a 3-2 advantage, Stevenson added insurance with 1:42 remaining in the third.

Pekka Rinne started in goal for the Predators and surrendered two goals on the first four shots he faced. Rinne, who is expected to back up Dan Ellis this season, finished with 16 saves on 19 shots over two periods.

Mark Dekanich played the third period for Nashville and turned away nine shots.

Defenseman Kevin Klein and Ryan Jones scored for the Predators.

Klein, who will be counted on to boost a power-play unit that ranked 27th in the league last season, converted a pass from fellow blue-liner Dan Hamhuis during a man advantage with 87 seconds left in the first period to cut Nashville's deficit to 2-1.

Acquired from Minnesota in an offseason deal involving defenseman Marek Zidlicky, Jones redirected a shot by Klein past Pavelec with 5:10 remaining in the third to draw the Predators within 3-2. A Hobey Baker Award finalist following his senior season at Miami University in 2007-08, the 6-1, 207-pound Jones could earn a spot on one of Nashville's scoring lines thanks to his size and willingness to battle in front of opposing goaltenders.

The Thrashers went 2-for-11 on the power play, while the Predators scored once during eight attempts with the man advantage.

Atlanta rested superstar Ilya Kovalchuk, who led the team with 52 goals and 87 points last season.








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    ATLANTA 2 1 1 4
    NASHVILLE 1 1 0 2 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: ATL - GARNET EXELBY 1 (CHRIS THORBURN, BRETT STERLING) 4:32
    ATL - (PP) GRANT STEVENSON 1 (GRANT LEWIS, RON HAINSEY) 6:38
    NAS - (PP) KEVIN KLEIN 1 (DAN HAMHUIS, VERNON FIDDLER) 18:33
    2ND PRD: ATL - (PP) JUNIOR LESSARD

    Sep 25 10:41 PM


  • NHL
    ATLANTA 4
    NASHVILLE 2
    3RD PRD: ATL - GRANT STEVENSON 2 (JIM SLATER, ANGELO ESPOSITO) 18:18

    Thrashers 4, Predators 2  3rd - 1:42Sep 25 10:38 PM
  • 5
    roots
    RUWTbot Took away 15 roots

    Thrashers 4, Predators 2  3rd - 1:42Sep 25 10:38 PM
  • 20
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 15 roots (Close Finish)

    Thrashers 3, Predators 2  3rd - 2:24Sep 25 10:37 PM
  • 5
    roots
    McTool Added 5 roots

    Thrashers 3, Predators 2  End of 2ndSep 25 9:49 PM


  • NHL
    ATLANTA 3
    NASHVILLE 2 0:00 LEFT, 2ND PRD

    Sep 25 9:41 PM


  • NHL
    ATLANTA 3
    NASHVILLE 2
    2ND PRD: NAS - RYAN JONES 1 (KEVIN KLEIN, MIKE SANTORELLI) 14:50

    Thrashers 3, Predators 2  2nd - 5:10Sep 25 9:32 PM


  • NHL
    ATLANTA 3
    NASHVILLE 1
    2ND PRD: ATL - (PP) JUNIOR LESSARD 1 (GRANT STEVENSON) 5:54

    Thrashers 3, Predators 1  2nd - 14:06Sep 25 9:14 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    ATLANTA 2 2
    NASHVILLE 1 1 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: ATL - GARNET EXELBY 1 (CHRIS THORBURN, BRETT STERLING) 4:32
    ATL - (PP) GRANT STEVENSON 1 (GRANT LEWIS, RON HAINSEY) 6:38
    NAS - (PP) KEVIN KLEIN 1 (DAN HAMHUIS, VERNON FIDDLER) 18:33
    SHOTS ON GOAL:

    Sep 25 8:46 PM


  • NHL
    ATLANTA 2
    NASHVILLE 1
    1ST PRD: NAS - (PP) KEVIN KLEIN 1 (DAN HAMHUIS, VERNON FIDDLER) 18:33

    Thrashers 2, Predators 1  1st - 1:27Sep 25 8:44 PM


  • NHL
    ATLANTA 2
    NASHVILLE 0
    1ST PRD: ATL - (PP) GRANT STEVENSON 1 (GRANT LEWIS, RON HAINSEY) 6:38

    Thrashers 2, Predators 0  1st - 13:22Sep 25 8:23 PM


  • NHL
    ATLANTA 1
    NASHVILLE 0
    1ST PRD: ATL - GARNET EXELBY 1 (CHRIS THORBURN, BRETT STERLING) 4:32

    Thrashers 1, Predators 0  1st - 15:28Sep 25 8:17 PM