The Nashville Predators could only get one of their 37 shots past Corey Crawford as they fell to the Chicago Blackhawks by a 4-1 final on Tuesday night at United Center. The loss concludes a stretch of three road games in four nights for the Preds, who went 1-1-1 in the outings.
“There are always things we can do better,” Head Coach Peter Laviolette said. “We’re in a position coming into a game tonight [with a chance to win] and that’s everybody’s responsibility. It didn’t go our way.”
Chicago recorded the first goal of the evening, courtesy of a tip in front off the stick of Dennis Rasmussen, his first tally in the NHL. Andrew Shaw made it 2-0 in favor of the Blackhawks when he one-timed a puck home on the power play, but the Preds got one back before the end of the middle stanza.
Roman Josi, who already had a number of offensive rushes toward the Hawks net, fed Eric Nystrom at the top of the crease, with Nystrom getting just enough of the puck to slide it past Corey Crawford to cut the Chicago lead to 2-1 headed into the second intermission.
Just 14 seconds into the third, Teuvo Teravainen beat Pekka Rinne to put the Hawks back up by two, a lead the Preds could not overcome. Patrick Kane added an empty netter to ice it and hand the Preds their first regulation loss of the trip.
“We’re not consistent; it’s not good enough,” Captain Shea Weber said. “You can sit here and say we’re getting chances, but who cares, we’re not winning games, we’re not scoring goals. That’s the bottom line; it’s not good enough.”
The Predators now head back home to Nashville to host the Blackhawks to complete their home-and-home series and the second of five meetings between the two this season. With a quick turnaround, the Preds will be eager to have another shot on Thursday.
“The best part about this League is you get to play the next night or two nights later and you have a chance to redeem yourself,” Weber said. “We have to start winning games and playing consistent. It’s frustrating because we’re so good at times and other times we’re not.”
“We get to go home, get some rest and get ready for Thursday; try them again,” Laviolette said.