The Nashville Predators said a name in 2004, after 257 others had been called in the opening eight rounds of the NHL Draft: Pekka Rinne.
Subtly at first, that's when the definition of success started to change in the organization. In 2011, Rinne led the Predators to their first playoff series win. In 2012, he helped them knock out their fearsome rival, the Detroit Red Wings, in five games. In 2017, Rinne began the Stanley Cup Playoffs with back-to-back shutouts and guided Nashville all the way to their first Stanley Cup Final.
He followed that up by winning 42 of 59 games in the 2017-18 season and giving the Predators their first Central Division title and Presidents' Trophy win. At the age of 35, No. 35 turned in his best work, earning his first Vezina Trophy as the NHL's top goaltender.
.927 Save %
Pekka Rinne finished first in save percentage (.927) and even-strength save percentage (.938)*
Rinne finished first in goals-against average*
No. 35 finished tied for first in the NHL in shutouts with eight, a career high
He bested his previous-high mark of seven, which he hit in 2008-09 and 2009-10
Rinne finished first in wins**Out of goaltenders who played at least 50 games
Pekka Rinne's 44th career shutout extended Nashville's point streak to five-straight games to give them a 4-2-1 record and a season sweep of the Flyers.
"Our main thing is to play tighter as a team and to make good decisions, and by no means are we a defensive team," Rinne said. "We play a fast game up and down the ice, but as a five-man unit, we've been better. That's been our focus, and then try to find that speed that we have. The first few games, we weren't able to generate that for some reason, but tonight, that's a great road game."
Pekka Rinne posted his 45th career shutout and the Predators defeated the Blues, 2-0, on Friday night at Scottrade Center. It's Nashville's fourth consecutive victory, giving them nine wins in their last 10 tries - and with the fathers watching live - the Preds found a way to defeat one of the League's top teams.
"He deserves a lot of credit tonight, like most nights," Preds center Ryan Johansen said of Rinne. "He's been stellar to start the year so far, and you need good goaltending to win in this League. He's been the backbone, and we need him to keep doing what he's doing."
Launched during the 2013-14 season, the 365 Pediatric Cancer Fund presented by Twice Daily is an initiative of the Nashville Predators Foundation and two of the team's icons, goaltender Pekka Rinne and former captain Shea Weber.
The 365 Pediatric Cancer Fund presented by Twice Daily works with Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt to raise funds and awareness for cancer research. Additionally, the initiative coordinates with the team to host a series of opportunities that enable the hospital's young patrons and their families to get a special dose of the Smashville hockey experience.
"You saw the last time we were here they came back on us, too," Preds Captain Roman Josi said. "We knew they were going to have a push after we were up 3-1, and they did. We did a good job responding with that huge goal scoring 4-2. Peks was great in the net."
It's been an impressive season for Pekka Rinne thus far, posting 21 wins in just 32 games, the second fastest start to 20 wins in his career.
The veteran netminder has been named to the Central Division squad that will participate in the 2018 festivities during the final weekend in January in Tampa Bay, Florida, joining Preds defenseman and Central Division Captain P.K. Subban, plus, Predators and Central Division Head Coach Peter Laviolette as the Nashville representatives.
Craig Smith buried a feed from Kevin Fiala midway through the third, and Pekka Rinne shut the door the rest of the way - making 36 saves in total - to collect his 299th career victory and get his club back in the win column.
The Predators made sure Pekka Rinne's 300th win wasn't in doubt by scoring seven times in a 7-1 rout of the Sharks.
Shortly after Rinne made his 33rd and final save of the night, the veteran puck stopper became the 34th goaltender in NHL history to record 300 wins, an elite club to say the least.
In addition to becoming the seventh active goaltender to attain the feat, Rinne is also just the third Finnish netminder to record NHL win No. 300.
Ryan Hartman broke a scoreless tie and Pekka Rinne recorded his seventh shutout of the season as the Nashville Predators defeated the Dallas Stars, 2-0. Tuesday night's victory at Bridgestone Arena is Nashville's ninth straight, setting a franchise record for consecutive wins.
"As a bigger picture, I think the last 30 games or something our stats are pretty remarkable," Rinne said. "It's fun right now with nine wins in a row. We're feeling good. The team is healthy, and we're clicking really well. It's so much fun."
The 365 Pediatric Cancer Fund, presented by Twice Daily and founded by Pekka Rinne and former Preds captain Shea Weber, is an integral part of each of the Preds Foundation's Hockey Fights Cancer Nights.
Weber noted that he and Rinne, "were in a unique situation where we could help, and were thankful to brighten up the lives of kids going through some of their toughest days."
The 365 Fund has two suites, funded by Weber and Rinne, which host special guests from Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt and their families at Predators home games throughout the season.
This family-friendly night out is a rare treat for most of the young visitors, many of which cannot handle the otherwise hustle and bustle of the crowded arena. Different opportunities to interact with the team, such as locker room meet and greets, further enhance this experience. Seasonal hospital visits by the team, and various fundraisers conducted by the Nashville Predators Foundation, serve to bolster the spirit and resources of the 365 Pediatric Cancer Fund presented by Twice Daily.
It's time to rewrite the record books again.
Pekka Rinne posted his eighth shutout of the season and the Predators saw their point streak hit a record 15 games on their way to defeating the Sabres, 4-0, on Monday night at KeyBank Center.
"I could go on about Peks forever," Preds center Ryan Johansen said. "I'm just happy to see him doing so well."
"He's just been steady," Nashville Head Coach Peter Laviolette said. "He's been rock steady for us the whole time."
Add another piece of hardware to the display case.
Prior to their 2017-18 regular-season finale on Saturday, the Nashville Predators were presented with the Presidents' Trophy by NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly in front of a raucous crowd at Bridgestone Arena.
Awarded annually to the club with the best overall record, the Predators clinched the honor on Thursday night in Washington, just minutes after becoming Central Division and regular-season Western Conference champions for the first time in team history.
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» Has two sisters, including his twin
» Favorite hobbies are tennis and reading
» His top musicians are Neil Young and Red Hot Chili Peppers
» Samurai Sushi is his first choice to eat at in Nashville
» Where does Rinne love to vacation? Greece!
» He'd like to try being the president of Finland for a day
» Rinne's jersey was taken aboard the Space Shuttle Discovery on Mission STS-133 on Feb. 24, 2011
"Life is pretty crazy when you stop to think about it. Isn't it?
I think about my journey to live in Nashville, a city that I now love, but a place so far away from where I grew up in the Finnish countryside. As a kid, I never dreamed of visiting the United States or playing the NHL. Until I was 20, I was pretty unsure on where Tennessee was actually located, and I had no reason to know.
So how did I end up here?"