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game recap

Stars use big second period to defeat Predators

Score four unanswered in preview of 2020 NHL Winter Classic

by @NHLdotcom

Hintz strikes from the slot

DAL@NSH: Hintz sends puck through Rinne's five-hole

Roope Hintz settles down the loose puck, then rips a shot from the slot through Pekka Rinne's five-hole, giving the Stars a 2-1 lead

  • 00:36 •

The Dallas Stars scored four unanswered goals in the second period of a 4-1 road win against the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena on Saturday.

Blake Comeau, Roope Hintz, Jamie Oleksiak and Andrew Cogliano scored, and Alexander Radulov had two assists for the Stars (19-11-4), who are 4-0-1 in their past five games. Anton Khudobin made 37 saves.

It was the first game between the Central Division rivals since Dallas defeated Nashville in six games in the Western Conference First Round last season. They'll face off again Jan. 1 in the 2020 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic at Cotton Bowl Stadium in Dallas.


[WATCH: All Stars vs. Predators highlights]


"It seems like we've built a pretty good rivalry, especially with the playoff series we had last year and now the outdoor game this year," Comeau said. "We knew it was going to be a huge divisional game for us coming into it."

Austin Watson scored, and Pekka Rinne made 18 saves for the Predators (14-12-5), who have lost two straight.

"It wasn't a quantity thing," Nashville coach Peter Laviolette said. "It was the quality, starting with the first [goal], a breakaway. The second one, we have a chance to clear pucks out of there and we don't. Again, another one turns over. It's coming back at us quick. So it's not like we were under siege, but the mistakes that we're making, they're costing us. They're too big. We need to quiet the game down defensively just from a quality standpoint, not a quantity standpoint, and right now they're capitalizing."

Watson deflected a point shot from Dan Hamhuis to give Nashville a 1-0 lead at 1:04 of the second.

Video: DAL@NSH: Watson opens the scoring with a deflection

"We got the lead," Watson said. "It's a lot easier to play with the lead than try to claw back into the game, but it turned around quick there with the shorthanded goal and from that point. We played well in the third, but to claw back from a 4-1 deficit against any team in the League, especially one of, if not the top defensive teams in the League, at least analytically, it's a tall task."

Comeau got behind the Predators defense and picked up a puck that bounced by Nashville defenseman Roman Josi to score shorthanded from the left face-off circle and tie it 1-1 at 4:46.

Hintz settled down a bouncing puck in the slot to make it 2-1 at 6:40.

Radulov found a pinching Oleksiak, who drove to the net before slipping a backhand past Rinne at 12:18 to extend the lead to 3-1.

Video: DAL@NSH: Oleksiak nets goal after great deke

"Sometimes it's clicking, sometimes it's going your way," said Radulov, who has six points (one goal, five assists) in four games since being a healthy scratch Dec. 5 against the Winnipeg Jets. "It's a long season. There's going to be some times when things [are] not going to go your way. You just have to continue working, compete and win those little battles in the corners, in the zone, on the blue lines, on the boards. Simple as that."

Cogliano pushed the lead to 4-1 when he intercepted Ryan Ellis' pass near the Nashville blue line and put in his own rebound over Rinne at 16:09.

"They pretty much got those four chances and they scored on every one of them," Rinne said. "I don't know what or why it was. Made a few mistakes, and then they made us pay right away. I've got to find a way to at least make some of those saves."


They said it

"[Radulov] was a hungry guy today. When he's hungry, with his intensity, he's an effective player and he's hard to play against because he's just a dog on a bone. He won't let go. He's going to stay on that puck and keep fighting, so give him credit." -- Stars coach Rick Bowness on forward Alexander Radulov

"It's been a rough go for too long. Another tough loss, especially at home. By the end of the game, there was probably half the people left in the arena, and it makes me embarrassed by the results at home. We've got to be better." -- Predators goalie Pekka Rinne on Nashville, which is 3-5-3 in its past 11 home games


Need to know

The Stars went 3-for-3 on the penalty kill and are 15-for-15 in their past six games. … Dallas forward Mattias Janmark missed the game with an upper-body injury. … Forward Mikael Granlund (lower body) and defenseman Mattias Ekholm (illness) were late scratches for the Predators. Granlund is day to day. ... Laviolette became the 20th coach to reach 1,200 games in the NHL. He is 632-422-121 with 25 ties with the Predators, New York Islanders, Carolina Hurricanes and Philadelphia Flyers. ... The Stars lost 3-2 in overtime to the Vegas Golden Knights at home Friday.


What's next

Stars: Host the Edmonton Oilers on Monday (8:30 p.m. ET, FS-SW+, SNW, NHL.TV) 

Predators: At the New York Rangers on Monday (7 p.m. ET; ESPN+, MSG, FS-TN, NHL.TV)

Video: Stars use big 2nd period in 4-1 win over Predators

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