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game recap

Smith, Predators top Canadiens

Nashville wins in shootout for first time since Oct. 20

by Sean Farrell / Correspondent

Smith's goal wins it in the SO

NSH@MTL: Smith wins it for Predators with SO goal

2/22/16: Craig Smith jukes out the Canadiens' goalie and buries the shootout goal to send the Predators to a victory on the road

  • 00:49 •

MONTREAL -- The Nashville Predators were not only able to make it through overtime without losing, they came close to a rare 3-on-3 win before Craig Smith redeemed himself in the shootout.

Smith scored on Nashville's third attempt after missing a great scoring opportunity in overtime to give the Predators a 2-1 win against the Montreal Canadiens at Bell Centre on Monday.

Smith hesitated and shot past Montreal goalie Mike Condon into the right side of the net after three Canadiens shooters failed to score on Pekka Rinne.

"It was good to get a chance at it quick again and kind of erase it," Smith said.

Rinne made 28 saves for Nashville (28-21-11), which has at least a point in six straight games (3-0-3) and set a team record with at least a point in eight consecutive road games (6-0-2). The Predators have not lost in regulation to the Canadiens in nine straight games (6-0-3).

Video: NSH@MTL: Arvidsson opens scoring with a goal

"It's tough to play in other buildings so I think we just have a high sense of urgency in our room to come out and really have a good first period, and that's really been as simple as it gets," said Smith, who had a shot at a wide open net in overtime on a pass from Mike Ribeiro.

The blade of Smith's stick got ahead of the puck and stopped it from entering the net.

"I thought (Condon) made a great save until I saw the replay," Ribeiro said.

The puck bounced off Condon's back and rolled clear.

"It's kind of funny now, but it wasn't funny at the time," Smith said.

Video: NSH@MTL: Gallagher ties it up in the 1st period

The Predators are 3-1 in shootouts this season, but have lost 10 of their 11 games decided in overtime, including three of their previous five games entering Monday.

"Some overtimes we haven't played very well," Predators coach Peter Laviolette said. "Tonight I thought we played it a lot better and were more patient and set it up for a couple of shots that we liked, and that was one of them, and it didn't go for us, but some of the times we have done some good things and haven't capitalized and it goes right back the other way and scores.

"So I thought we did a better job tonight just being patient and waiting for our opportunities and trying to control the overtime, trying to control the puck, so that was good. It was good the guys were able to bury it in the shootout."

Montreal (28-27-5) had its four-game home winning streak ended. Condon made 29 saves in his second straight start, including a save on Ribeiro's backhander from the goalmouth at 12:29 of the third.

"Condon made a lot of saves to keep us in there tight," said Canadiens right wing Brendan Gallagher, who scored in the first. "It's just a case of him battling and he did a good job."

Video: NSH@MTL: Rinne prevents late tie-breaking goal

The Canadiens won 3-2 in a shootout against the Philadelphia Flyers on Friday after returning from an 0-3-0 road trip. They are 13th in the Eastern Conference with 61 points, seven points behind the Pittsburgh Penguins for the second wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Eastern Conference.

"You've got to stay positive right now," Condon said. "It's a point, we'll take it. We've got three of the last four. We've just got to keep it rolling and keep chipping away at it, and good things will happen."

Viktor Arvidsson scored his sixth goal this season to give Nashville a 1-0 lead at 3:16 of the first period while a delayed penalty was called against Montreal.

Gallagher drew Montreal even at 1-1 with his 16th goal this season when he put a rebound off of an Andrei Markov shot past Rinne from the goalmouth at 18:43.

Predators defenseman Shea Weber and Laviolette protested that Gallagher made contact with the puck with a high stick to send it to Markov on the play that led to the goal.

Video: NSH@MTL: Condon gloves hot shot for save

Condon made successive saves on a slap shot by Weber and Smith's wrist shot off the rebound at 12:02 of the second period.

"I think early on in the game we were throwing pucks out of the zone right to them," Gallagher said. "Later on we were able to skate through the neutral zone with it and make their (defensemen) work. We were able to create some turnovers. After the first 10 minutes of the game I thought it became a pretty even game."

Predators defenseman Roman Josi cleared a loose puck away from the net with his glove during a pileup in the crease with 2:33 left in the third.

Nashville defenseman Barret Jackman did not play because of an upper-body injury he sustained Saturday during the second period of a 2-1 overtime loss to the Los Angeles Kings. Jackman took part in the morning skate and may be ready to return when the Predators continue their three-game road trip at the Toronto Maple Leafs on Tuesday, but Laviolette had no update on his status.

The Canadiens said after the game that defenseman Tom Gilbert will have season-ending surgery to repair a left knee injury he sustained Saturday. Montreal plays at the Washington Capitals on Wednesday.

Video: Smith hits game-winner in shootout to lift Predators

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