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game recap

Blues pull away to defeat Predators

Kyle Brodziak, Vladimir Tarasenko score in third period; St. Louis sweeps three-game homestand

by Louie Korac / NHL.com Correspondent

ST. LOUIS -- The St. Louis Blues have responded accordingly after allowing eight goals in a loss on Nov. 12 in Columbus.

The Blues came home, did some soul-searching and found a remedy this past week by getting back to playing disciplined hockey in their building. The result was a three-game winning streak following a 3-1 decision against the Nashville Predators at Scottrade Center on Saturday.

 

WATCH: All Predators vs. Blues highlights

 

Blues center Kyle Brodziak scored the game-winner when he converted a backhand rebound of Scottie Upshall's shot at 7:28 of the third period after Nashville goalie Pekka Rinne made the initial save off an odd-man rush.

It was Brodziak's second goal in three games after he had not scored in the first 15.

"The [defenseman] kind of played it well where there wasn't much open space in between us," Brodziak said. "[Upshall] made a great play, and when you get a chance like that, it was on purpose. A lot of people don't probably understand that a shot off the goalie or a pass off the goalie makes sense, but it's a play he tried to make and it was a good one."

Video: NSH@STL: Tarasenko takes feed, fires laser past Rinne

David Perron and Vladimir Tarasenko also scored for St. Louis (10-6-3), which improved to 8-1-2 at Scottrade Center, including getting points in the past eight (6-0-2). Jake Allen made 30 saves to improve to 6-0-2 on home ice.

The Predators (7-7-3), who went 1-2-0 on a three-game road trip, got a goal from Mike Ribeiro. Rinne made 31 saves for his first regulation loss in November (5-1-2).

"I thought we were good for two periods," Predators coach Peter Laviolette said. "They seemed to grab some momentum off of that power play to open the third period, and shortly after that we just couldn't seem to corral it. They gained some momentum and I think the shots were seven or eight to nothing at one point. We start the third and we just couldn't get going."

Perron put the Blues ahead 1-0, extending his point streak to four games after he scored on a backhand at 3:09 of the second.

Ribeiro tied the game 1-1 on the power play at 8:59.

Tarasenko scored off another odd-man rush, converting a wrist shot from the slot at 11:36 of the third to give the Blues a 3-1 lead.

Video: NSH@STL: Allen robs Fisher's point-blank shot

 

Goal of the game

The game-winner by Brodziak was textbook from Upshall, who purposely targeted Rinne's pads on the initial shot off the 2-on-1 to create a rebound once he saw Brodziak crashing the net. "Yeah, we work on that shot a lot," Upshall said. "I got Pekka on it last year actually. I knew he knew it was coming, but it was just a great play by Kyle to go far pad, far post. He made a good play to get that puck on his backhand. It was a good goal."

Video: NSH@STL: Brodziak backhands home the rebound

 

Save of the game

Allen's save on Mattias Ekholm right before the Tarasenko goal with 8:38 remaining was a two-goal swing for the Blues that turned a potential 2-2 game into a 3-1 St. Louis lead.

Video: NSH@STL: Allen lays out to protect the net

 

Highlight of the game

The Predators weren't creating the kind of traffic at Allen like the Blues were at Rinne until Ribeiro crashed the net and was able to find a loose puck behind Allen, who made the initial save on Craig Smith's shot.

Video: NSH@STL: Ribeiro knocks in trickling puck for PPG

 

Unsung moment of the game

Perron's goal was executed in three phases. Center Paul Stastny won the offensive zone faceoff, defenseman Jay Bouwmeester's slap shot from the left point created a rebound and Perron went to the net and scored.

Video: NSH@STL: Perron buries goal on nifty backhanded shot

 

They said it

"It isn't that the game was just on the line. We outplayed all three teams. So from every aspect of our game -- from special teams to shots on goal to scoring chances -- we outplayed all three teams. That's the No. 1 sign for me. We upped our energy as the game went on. I thought, overall, of the three games, this was probably the best game we've played." -- coach Ken Hitchcock on the Blues outscoring three opponents 5-0 in the third period this past week

 

"I don't think anything changed. They put some pressure on us the first couple minutes in the third [and] they played a little better, and before that third goal we had a huge chance in front of their net. [That's the] kind of tough luck that comes your way when you don't score." -- Predators defenseman Roman Josi

 

Need to know

Predators right wing James Neal had his six-game goal-scoring streak end. ... Predators left wing Colin Wilson (upper body) was a late scratch and was replaced by Cody Bass. ... Blues forward Alexander Steen missed his second straight game with an undisclosed injury.

 

What's next

Predators: Host the Tampa Bay Lightning on Monday (8 p.m. ET; TVAS, FS-TN, SUN, NHL.TV)

Blues: At the Boston Bruins on Tuesday (7 p.m. ET; NBCSN, SN, NESN, FS-MW, NHL.TV)

 

Video: Allen stops 30 as late goals give Blues 3-1 win

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