It was a battle of the goalies from start to finish in last night's 2-1 shootout loss to the Sharks. The Predators have now dropped two consecutive matches on this road trip.
The score remained knotted at zero until more than halfway through the second period. Juuse Saros put together a 36-save evening, Martin Jones a 31-saver. On the bright side, Saros is steadily improving his previously horrendous numbers- his .969 save percentage during last night's game pulls him up to a .890 average save percentage for 2019-2020. On the down side, Nashville was held to just one goal all game in a still aggressive offensive effort. They were outshot in each of the three regulation periods, bringing the count to 30-19 in favor of San Jose. The Sharks have the best penalty kill in the league- an over 91 percent kill rate- and it showed. The Preds went 0 for 4 on the power play last night.
The Preds' lone goal came on the heels of some stickhandling theatrics by Filip Forsberg about 15 minutes into the second frame. Dangling through the legs of Erik Karlsson, Forsberg pushed ahead of him and flipped the puck up and over Jones' right pad into the twine.
San Jose's Tomas Hertl tied it up at one a few minutes into the third period, and the game had to go into seven shootout rounds in order for the tie to be broken. Saros and Jones took turns stoning all the shots they each faced in the shootout until Timo Meier finally got one by Saros.
After the drubbing by Colorado on Thursday, the Preds really needed to respond with a win last night. They managed to squeak a point out of it, but the Preds have to command games with more gusto than they've showed the past two games.
The Preds are in Vancouver on Tuesday to take on the Canucks.