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Fly-by: Predators 4, Flyers 2

by Staff Writer / Philadelphia Flyers
Saturday, January 14, 2012

2 - 4
FINAL 1 2 3 T
Flyers 0 1 1 2
Predators 1 1 2 4
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PHI:   S. Couturier (12:18 - 2nd) , W. Simmonds (09:55 - 3rd)
NSH:   M. Erat (PPG, 19:02 - 1st) , S. Kostitsyn (10:36 - 2nd) , N. Spaling (04:30 - 3rd) , M. Fisher (EN, 19:20 - 3rd)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Pekka Rinne made 36 saves and Nick Spaling scored the game-winner as the Nashville Predators beat the Philadelphia Flyers 4-2 Saturday night.

Martin Erat, Sergei Kostitsyn and Mike Fisher also scored for Nashville, which won its fourth straight.

Rookie Sean Couturier and Wayne Simmonds had Philadelphia's goals as the Flyers snapped a two-game win streak.

Trailing 2-0, Couturier cut the deficit in half with 7:42 to go in the second period with a slick wrist shot from the right circle that beat Rinne high to the glove side and tucked just underneath the crossbar. Couturier's score gave him a goal in four straight games.

Nashville regained its two-goal advantage at 4:30 of the third when Jordin Tootoo's centering pass deflected off of the shaft of Spaling's stick and past Flyers goalie Ilya Bryzgalov.

Simmonds pulled teh Flyers to 3-2 at 9:55 as he outmuscled Nashville defenseman Ryan Ellis to get the rebound of Couturier's backhand shot from the left circle and then poked the puck past Rinne.

Fisher's empty-net goal with 39 seconds to go sealed the Predators' win.

Sean Couturier scored in his fourth consecutive game.  He’s the second Flyers rookie to do that this season, joining Matt Read, who scored in five consecutive games from Nov. 13-21.
The Flyers had 38 shots in the game.  They have had 35 or more shots in six of their last seven games, with the 22-shot night at NYI on Thursday standing as the only exception.  Prior to this run, they had not had more than 35 shots in a game since Dec. 2 at Anaheim, when they had 47.
Danny Briere was 12-for-16 (75 percent) on faceoffs.
After posting eight shots on goal against NYI on Thursday, Jake Voracek had 11 shots toward the net tonight – five on goal, four that were blocked and two that missed.
Tonight’s game was the Flyers’ first ever regulation loss in Nashville and their first regulation loss overall to the Predators since Nov. 29, 2006 in Philadelphia.

Sean Couturier
Sean Couturier gets tonight's Flyers star for his performance in tonight's game at Nashville.

Couturier got the Flyers on the board by firing a rocket over the shoulder of Pekka Rinne to pull the Flyers within one goal.

The goal was his fourth straight and now gives him points in six of his last eight games.

"Bottom line, I think the team played great. At least, I think we deserved a point. The guys deserved a point because they battled hard, fearless, and I think to be fair at least we should get one point."
-Ilya Bryzgalov

"It’s not really about the stats; it’s just that I know I can play better. I want to help the team win. I think we have to go back to doing things simple. It’s frustrating when you know you can play better."
-Claude Giroux
Tonight's turning point came 4:30 into the third period and gave the Predators a 3-1 lead.

After pulling to within one goal heading into the third period, Predators forward Nick Spaling flicked a pass towards the crease and the puck ended up in the back of the net to give Nashville their two-goal lead back with just 15 minutes left in the game to hold off the Flyers.

Wayne Simmonds would get one back for the Flyers around the 10-minute mark, but Predators goaltender Pekka Rinne held the fort to give Nashville their fourth straight win.
PIC OF THE NIGHT: Wayne Simmonds gets upended by Nashville D-man Ryan Ellis.

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