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game recap

Predators rally late to defeat Coyotes

Nashville clinches first wild card spot in West after Josi scores 20 seconds into overtime

by Robby Stanley / Correspondent

Josi's game-winning goal in OT

ARI@NSH: Josi powers to the net for overtime winner

4/7/16: Roman Josi powers his way to the net, skates across the crease and stuffs the game-winning goal into the twine 20 seconds into overtime

  • 01:50 •

NASHVILLE -- Roman Josi's goal 20 seconds into overtime gave the Nashville Predators a 3-2 come-from-behind win against the Arizona Coyotes at Bridgestone Arena on Thursday.

The Predators (41-26-14) improved to 2-12 in overtime, and clinched the first wild card spot in the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Western Conference and will play the winner of the Pacific Division in the first round.

Josi took the puck from James Neal, got around Coyotes forward Max Domi and extended the puck past goaltender Mike Smith for his 14th goal.

"Well we won the faceoff, which is obviously huge in [overtime] to get the puck possession right away," Josi said. "I got a pass in the neutral zone. [Neal] made a nice little drop pass. Their [defenseman], which was a forward, was kind of far back and he didn't have a lot of speed so I tried to go outside."

"Obviously we wanted to get a win in the last home game," Josi said. "Our fans have been so great to us this whole year so they definitely deserved the win."

Video: ARI@NSH: Forsberg notches equalizer on tip-in

Filip Forsberg scored to tie the game at 2-2 with 18.3 seconds left in the third period on a redirection. Josi took the original shot and Forsberg redirected the shot past Smith for his 33rd goal.

Forsberg tied the franchise record for most goals in a season. Jason Arnott scored 33 for Nashville in 2008-09.

"He's unreal," Josi said. "The stuff he does out there is unbelievable. You saw the goal he scored [in a 4-3 win against the Colorado Avalanche]. He's been great. Some things he does in practice that you guys don't even see, sometimes you look at yourselves and you think you're the worst hockey player with the stuff he does. 

"He's been unreal for us, and he's got a great future ahead of him."

Video: ARI@NSH: Weber collects his 20th goal of the season

Shea Weber scored to make it 2-1 at 7:26 of the third on a one-timer from the left faceoff circle. Craig Smith cut toward the net and delivered a pass that split Coyotes defenders, which Weber finished for his 20th goal.

"We've talked about just being consistent in all three periods," Weber said. "I thought we did a pretty good job tonight. Last game, I thought we played two good periods so we're making progress."

Smith made 28 saves for the Coyotes (35-38-8), who have lost five of the past six.

"He was the only reason we were in the game," Coyotes coach Dave Tippett said. "Let's be serious here, right? He made some great saves throughout the whole game."

Video: ARI@NSH: Vermette scores off feed from Michalek

Antoine Vermette gave the Coyotes a 1-0 lead at 6:26 of the first period on a redirection. Defenseman Zbynek Michalek took the original shot from the point, and it deflected off of Vermette and past Predators goaltender Pekka Rinne, who made 16 saves, for his 17th goal.

Shane Doan gave the Coyotes a 2-0 lead at 9:42 of the second period on a one-timer. Forward Brad Richardson made a cross-ice pass through traffic, and Doan was able to one-time the puck past Rinne for his 28th goal.

"I think we played a better game tonight," Doan said. "We had opportunities to win it. We didn't take advantage of it, but if you miss the playoffs, you miss the playoffs. I don't think there is any real way to feel good about yourselves at the end of the year when you miss the playoffs. It is what it is, and it's no fun."

Predators defenseman Anthony Bitetto returned to the lineup after missing nine games with a lower-body injury. He was paired with Ryan Ellis.

Arizona will play at the San Jose Sharks to close out its season, and Nashville will play its season finale at the Dallas Stars on Saturday.

Video: ARI@NSH: Preds edge Coyotes on Josi's overtime goal

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