The Avalanche started off Tuesday night's game poorly, falling behind the Predators 1-0 just 1:33 into the first period on a Craig Smith goal. Jarome Iginla tied the game a few minutes later, but his goal would be the only time Colorado lit the lamp all night. It was all Predators the rest of the night. A Matt Irwin goal would send the Preds to the dressing room with a 2-1 lead.
Nashville took the game over in the 2nd period, firing 19 shots at Colorado goaltender Semyon Varlamov. Varly stood tall, only allowing one goal on those 19 shots. The Avs spent some time on the power play late in the period, but they couldn't muster much against a tough Nashville defense. Pekka Rinne turned the clock back about five years with his performance in this one.
The Avs dominated most of the third period, but they simply could not solve the Predators defense or Rinne. In one sequence, they had two 2-on-1 opportunities on a penalty kill. The first one started with a great play by Nathan MacKinnon, but ended when the pass was just a hair in front of Landeskog's stick. The second one ended with a shot hitting Rinne's blocker. A few minutes later, Andreas Martinsen had an open net, but Preds defenseman Ryan Ellis dropped to his knees in the crease to block the shot. The Predators potted two quick goals with six minutes left, ending the night the way it started, with a Craig Smith goal. (Sidenote, who the hell is Craig Smith?)
The door to the Avs dressing room remained closed after the game, with a visibly upset Gabe Landeskog saying that there was first a players only meeting followed by an address from head coach Jared Bednar. It seems early for these kinds of things, but this team has its eyes on the playoffs, and nights like tonight can't happen if they are to go anywhere. On to Chicago.
Nashville: Craig Smith (x2), Matt Irwin, Ryan Johansen, Roman Josi
Colorado: Jarome Iginla
Nashville: Pekka Rinne (28/29 saves)
Colorado: Semyon Varlamov (31/36 saves)
3 Thumbs Up
1. Mark Rycroft's wardrobe
2. Gabe Landeskog's hair
Martin Eric Gelinas' mustache
3 Thumbs Down
1. Patrick Weircioch (seriously, 22:35 TOI?)
2. Rene Bourque (rough night passing the puck)
3. The NHL schedule makers - this schedule sucks
At Chicago, Thursday, November 3, 6:30 PM