Coming off a two-game win streak, the Predators dropped their last game of an extended road trip to the Red Wings tonight, 5-2.
Just when you thought the Predators may have kicked it into gear, Sam Gagner scores his first three goals of the year on just four shots, Luke Glendening nets his fifth and sixth point of the year against the Preds (he only has seven points on the season), and the Preds are conceivably a loss away from being at the bottom of the league.
Holding it together until roughly the 15-minute mark of the third period, the Preds were generating offense and staying poised after tying the game two separate times. Despite having outshot the Red Wings for most of the game, the Preds' attempt at a comeback percolated more as a collapse.
Detroit had fewer shots, but edged Nashville in high-danger chances by a pair. The Red Wings' 14 HDCF accounted for nearly half of their shot total. Only 30 percent of the Preds' 39 shots counted as HDCF. The Preds' shot spread was one of their few accomplishments of the evening, covering most available angles to the net.
Along with Gagner's first hat trick since Nov. 10, 2013 and Glendening's one goal-one assist performance, Bobby Ryan and Darren Helm notched an assist apiece, and Danny DeKeyser finished with the only +3 rating of the game. Jonathan Bernier simply had a stout night in net, saving 37 shots for a .949 save percentage. While the Preds seemed to have figured out the code to stopping Robby Fabbri and Anthony Mantha (they held them to five collective shots and -1 ratings tonight), their penance is having Glendening, Gagner, and Adam Erne pick apart their defense.
Mikael Granlund scored the Preds' first goal of the evening, but finished the game with a -3 rating and four PIMs. Erik Haula scored his first goal as a Predator, it just unfortunately came on a night where not much else went right for his new team.
The Preds will be back home for a matinee meeting with Columbus on Saturday. The Blue Jackets were shut out by the Blackhawks tonight, dropping their third game in a row.