26 SOG
40 SOG

Predators beat Stars 3-2 in shootout | Tuesday, 08.16.2011 / 5:17 AM

Nashville coach Barry Trotz didn't decide on a his starting goaltender until the day before his team's first game. It looks like he made the right choice.

Dan Ellis stopped 38 of 40 shots in regulation on Saturday night, then turned aside four of five in the shootout as the Predators opened their season with a 3-2 shootout win over the Dallas Stars.

Ellis lost the starting job to Pekka Rinne down the stretch last season, but worked hard in the off-season and excelled in camp, earning the opening-night start

"I'd say it was the right decision based out of camp, putting a lot of emphasis on the training camp portion," Trotz said. "It was a good win for Dan and the team, and I thought we started off pretty well."

Rookie Mike Santorelli's goal in the fifth round gave the Predators only their fifth win in 21 visits to Dallas and sent them home with a win in a game in which they couldn't hold  a 2-0 lead.

Ellis stopped the first 20 shots he saw and led 2-0 before James Neal banged in a rebound with 10 seconds remaining in the second period.

"Giving up that late goal in the second really gave them a lot of energy." Trotz said. "I thought it gave them a lot of energy in the third and we ended up in a lot of penalty trouble that was pretty taxing on our players. They had a real good push after they got that first goal."

Neal struck again 4:05 into the third following a high-sticking penalty to Ben Guite. He grabbed Ellis' clearing attempt between the circles and beat him high to get the Stars even.

Turco stopped 24 of 26 shots, fending off a late Nashville power play that extended into overtime. But after Mike Ribeiro put Dallas ahead by scoring in the second round of the shootout, David Legwand scored in the third round to keep the Predators alive and Santorelli won it.

"It felt all right. We know we deserved a little bit better, getting a win tonight, the way we played," Turco said. "It was pretty great to see us coming from behind and sticking with it."

Jason Arnott opened the scoring 1:48 into the game with Mike Modano in the box for tripping. Turco stopped Arnott's initial wraparound try, but Arnott squeezed his own rebound under Turco's arm to the far side.

Steve Sullivan made it 2-0 at 4:47 of the second period, beating Turco with a wrist shot.

After Neal tied it, Dallas defenseman Karlis Skrastins had a chance to win the game in the final seconds of regulation, but fired wide on a 2-on-1 break.

It was a disappointing start for the Stars, who are trying to bounce back after missing the playoffs in 2008-09 and replacing Dave Tippett as coach with Marc Crawford.

"We talked about a good start, and short shifts," defenseman Trevor Daley said. "We maybe deserved a little better than we got. Sometimes that's the way this game is. Some nights you don't play so well and get wins. Tonight was one of those games where we thought we should have won it."

Nashville lost forward J.P. Dumont early in the second period after a big shoulder hit by Stephane Robidas and didn't return.

"He was out for precautionary reasons. He seems fine." Trotz said. "He had a big old smile on his face after the game."

Brenden Morrow showed no lingering effects from a torn ACL that sidelined him for the final 64 games of last season. The Dallas captain had two shots on goal, had another two blocked, and recorded two hits but was kept off the scoresheet.

Nashville has four days off until its home opener on Oct. 8 against the Colorado Avalanche. The Stars will hit the road and play in Edmonton on Tuesday, the beginning of a three-game trip. This was the first of three meetings between Dallas and Nashville in October.

--Brad Gardner, Correspondent

NSH ()
DAL ()
Scoring Summary
1st Period
01:48NSH PPG - Jason Arnott (1) Wrist shot - ASST: J-P Dumont (1) 1 - 0 NSH
2nd Period
04:47NSH Steve Sullivan (1) Wrist shot - ASST: Jason Arnott (1), Patric Hornqvist (1) 2 - 0 NSH
19:50DAL James Neal (1) Wrist shot - ASST: Fabian Brunnstrom (1), Brad Richards (1) 2 - 1 NSH
3rd Period
04:05DAL PPG - James Neal (2) Wrist shot - ASST: NONE 2 - 2 Tie
OT Period
1NSHSteve Sullivan - Save
2DALJames Neal - Missed
3NSHMarcel Goc - Save
4DALMike Ribeiro - Goal
5NSHDavid Legwand - Goal
6DALBrad Richards - Save
7NSHMartin Erat - Missed
8DALMike Modano - Save
9NSHMike Santorelli - Goal
10DALLoui Eriksson - Save
Shootout Summary
RNDNashville PredatorsDallas Stars
1Steve Sullivan
James Neal
2Marcel Goc
Mike Ribeiro
3David Legwand
Brad Richards
4Martin Erat
Mike Modano
5Mike Santorelli
Loui Eriksson
Penalty Summary
1st Period
00:41DAL Mike Modano  Tripping against  Jason Arnott
13:11NSH Ryan Suter  Cross checking against  Fabian Brunnstrom
14:11NSH J-P Dumont  Too many men/ice - bench
17:56DAL Jamie Benn  Roughing against  Francis Bouillon
2nd Period
06:17DAL Trevor Daley  Hooking against  Dan Hamhuis
3rd Period
03:45NSH Ben Guite  Hi-sticking against  Brenden Morrow
08:58NSH Ryan Jones  Hooking against  Jamie Benn
10:52NSH Ryan Suter  Slashing against  Mike Ribeiro
19:25DAL Brad Richards  Slashing against  Steve Sullivan
OT Period
01:14NSH Martin Erat  Hooking against  Nicklas Grossmann
shots by period
Team Stats
Power Plays1/41/6
Faceoff Wins3730
Blocked Shots1513
Penalty Minutes128
2D. HamhuisD00-12027:30
3W. BelakR000005:06
4T. LaaksoD000006:20
6S. WeberD0012028:37
8K. KleinD0000017:05
9M. GocC0001014:57
10M. EratR0004221:07
11D. LegwandC0001022:07
18M. SantorelliC0003015:29
19J. ArnottC1107020:20
20R. SuterD0012427:44
24B. GuiteR0000212:05
25J. SmithsonC0000015:46
26S. SullivanL1001022:38
27P. HornqvistR0101016:19
28R. JonesL000027:43
51F. BouillonD00-11021:46
71J. DumontR010107:01
39D. Ellis3840.95065:00
2N. GrossmannD0000018:32
3S. RobidasD0001024:52
5M. NiskanenD0003020:40
6T. DaleyD0003223:47
9M. ModanoC0001216:28
10B. MorrowL0002018:27
13K. BarchR000006:19
14J. BennL0002215:59
17T. PetersenC0004011:55
18J. NealR2005019:34
21L. ErikssonR00-10020:33
23T. WandellC0000011:42
29S. OttC0003016:30
37K. SkrastinsD0000021:43
44J. WoywitkaD0003014:33
63M. RibeiroC0004019:46
91B. RichardsC0108220:49
96F. BrunnstromL0111010:44
35M. Turco2426.92365:00