The Nashville Predators avoided the proverbial "trap" game on Long Island on Monday afternoon and jumped out to a 3-0 lead before most of the Islander faithful had a chance to get comfortable in their seats.
The only negatives to the game were Ryan Suter's re-aggravation to his lower body injury and Pekka Rinne losing a shutout with less than four minutes in the contest on a John Tavares goal.
Barry Trotz had great foresight in playing seven defensemen so even in spite of Suter leaving after the first period, none of the other D-men played more than Kevin Klein's 23:28. That should allow everyone to be fairly fresh for tonight's date with the Eastern Conference leading New York Rangers.
Ryan Ellis continues to prove that he belongs in the NHL. He picked up an assist on Sergei Kostitsyn's goal and was +3 for the game. Kostitsyn now has six goals on eight shots and has added two assists in calender year 2012 which covers seven games, and he appears ready to produce as he did last season.
A key this year continues to be the balanced attack with the third and fourth lines contributing on par with the top six forwards. With plenty of scoring from Nick Spaling, Matt Halischuk, Jordin Tootoo and others, opponents can't focus on the top scoring lines or even Shea Wever and Suter.
The Predators will have a far bigger challenge this evening when the face the Rangers on NBC Sports Network (6:30 p.m. CST) and face a top team with a future Hall of Famer in goal. It is unclear if Rinne will return in net or if Trotz will play a hunch and go with Anders Lindback. We will have to wait and see how the cards fall.
Here is our game story from yesterday along with a few comments from the couch. Make the jump for the full round-up of everything from the game...
Main Stream Media...
Josh Cooper: (The Tennessean) Game story - Notes - Postgame Ponderings
Jim Diamond (Preds.com)
Dan Rosen NHL.com
Ryan Porth (Smashville 24/7) Game Story - One More Thing
Amanda DiPaolo (Inside Smashville)
Mark Willoughby (The View from 111)
Robby Stanley (Hockey Night in Nashville)
Jeremy Gover (Section 303) Game Story - LeftGovers
Marc Torrence (On The Forecheck)
Laura Hutchings (Lady Preds)
Long Island Media...
The Islanders Aggregator
Video from the Predators comes from....
Three Stars of the Game...
1. David Legwand
2. Pekka Rinne
3. Sergei Kostitsyn
Highlights come from NHL.com....
Buddy Oakes for PredsOnTheGlass