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Mully's Musings: vs. Anaheim

by Bryan Mullen / Nashville Predators
After examining their 3-0 shutout against Anaheim, there is a long list of positives for the Nashville Predators. They opened with a quick score, the captain notched his first goal of the season, and pucks were flying at the opponent’s net.

The most impressive?

It may have been the Predators’ composure.

Refusing to play into the hands of the always-feisty Ducks, Nashville stuck to its game, stayed out of the box and now head out for a five-game road trip with plenty of confidence. The Predators showed their toughness against Anaheim but were smart about it. They have now won three of their last four games and have outscored their last two opponents 8-3. Oh, and Nashville outshot the Ducks 29-20.

Still, what may be remembered most from this game is the injury suffered by forward Mike Fisher. To the musings…

Is Fisher fine?: A hush fell over Bridgestone Arena with 7:19 to go in the first when Fisher took a blindside hit from Anaheim’s Francois Beauchemin. Fisher fell to the ice and stayed there. Beauchemin got two minutes for roughing and two minutes for an illegal check to the head. He was not ejected. Fisher, who did not return to the game, is being listed with an upper-body injury. It was his third game since returning from offseason shoulder surgery and had provided a huge boost to the lineup, with talent and leadership. It is not known how long Fisher will be out, but if it’s for an extended amount of time, someone will need to step up. As Predators coach Barry Trotz said after the game, that is part of a Preds player’s DNA.

Hornqvist shines: Patric Hornqvist looks like his old self, staying put in front of the opponent’s net and making plays. He scored Nashville’s first goal only 14 seconds into the game which immediately put the Ducks on their heels. He also set a nice screen in front of the net on Shea Weber’s power play goal at 2:14 of the third, which gave Nashville a 3-0 lead. Hornqvist had a game-high seven shots, including five in the first period alone.

No goals for you: Pekka Rinne’s night in, night out spectacular performances are becoming so expected that sometimes you have to force yourself to appreciate how great they really are. He got his 100th career NHL win and stopped all 20 shots he faced. And for the second game in a row, his teammates helped him out by limiting the amount of shots he faces.

D Shea Weber: “I think they came in here and tried to run us out of our own building. I think the guys in here stepped up.”

F Patric Hornqvist: “Sometimes pucks don’t bounce your way, and it’s hard to score if they don’t bounce your way. The last two games, I’ve had the opportunity to play a little more. I think the whole team is playing much better. That makes it easier for me to score goals and help the team.”

Coach Barry Trotz: “I thought we stood up well for ourselves. There was some chippiness. We got tested a little bit by a big, physical team and we responded great.”

F Patric Hornqvist: Scored game’s first goal (14-seconds into the opening period), game-high seven shots
G Pekka Rinne: Stopped all 20 shots
D Shea Weber: 1 goal, 1 assist, game-high 27:29

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