Predators Fight Hard Until the End, But Lose Their Sixth-Straight

NASHVILLE, TN - NOVEMBER 21: Calle Jarnkrok #19 of the Nashville Predators skates against Bo Horvat #53 of the Vancouver Canucks at Bridgestone Arena on November 21, 2019 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images)
NASHVILLE, TN - NOVEMBER 21: Calle Jarnkrok #19 of the Nashville Predators skates against Bo Horvat #53 of the Vancouver Canucks at Bridgestone Arena on November 21, 2019 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images) /

You can call it bad luck if you want, but either way the Nashville Predators still can’t end the slump they’re in. Like a bad cold you can’t shake.

This game is one of those games where luck just wasn’t on the side of the Nashville Predators. Props are owed to the Vancouver Canucks for taking advantage on the power play, but this game was full of bad fortune for the Predators in the 6-3 loss.

What I take away from this game is a lot of bad bounces and some undisciplined penalties to a team that was already a perfect 3-for-3 against the Predators penalty kill in the last meeting. This isn’t necessarily the ugliest of losses, but it’s magnified due to what the Predators have been going through recently.

All of the negative emotions are multiplied right now because the Predators are in such bad slump. If you look just at this game in a vacuum, there’s some positives to take away. They tested Vancouver’s Jacob Markstrom early and often, but he made some outstanding saves.

Predators never gave up

You have to be pleased with how the Predators stayed relentless in their comeback.  They didn’t fold and pack it in after falling behind 5-2 in the second period. They kept the pressure on and didn’t let Vancouver go into cruise control.

What’s really hard to swallow is the Predators didn’t seem to get the same fortunate bounces that Vancouver got. That happens in hockey unfortunately. You can’t use that as an excuse as the Predators took some frustration penalties they shouldn’t have taken.

You may not see it in the final score of 6-3, but the Predators did put up a great effort in their comeback attempt. It just didn’t translate to the scoreboard, and the Canucks added the nail in the coffin with the empty-netter while the Predators pulled Juuse Saros while on the power play.

Before the empty-netter, the Predators were pushing hard to get the deficit to one goal. They had over ten minutes left in regulation to try to make up the two-goal deficit. It could’ve easily happened the way the Predators were camping in the Vancouver zone.

More takeaways from this game

It was tough to see Pekka Rinne get chased out of the game again for Saros. These goals the Canucks scored on their power play Rinne had virtually no chance at stopping. Pucks bouncing off Predators players and being redirected. Just a tough break all the way around.

Rinne has now been chased out of the game for Saros three times this season, and all during this current slump. The Predators have just one win in the month of November. In games that Rinne has been taken out he’s given up 14 goals.

As I mentioned earlier, the Predators got plenty of pressure on Vancouver. They threw everything they had at Markstrom and just couldn’t get the bounces they were looking for. They finish with 48 shots on goal, but Vancouver did manage 22 blocks. In return, the Predators had just six blocked shots.

There were 12 power play opportunities between the two teams, with each team getting six chances. The obvious difference-maker in the game is that Vancouver founds way to connect while the Predators connected on just one despite getting plenty of good looks.

Calle Jarnkrok managed a goal and an assist in the game and looked great alongside Mikael Grandlund and Matt Duchene. That line was aggressive and pushed the pace to create scoring chances.

Another awesome milestone from the game is Viktor Arvidsson getting his 200th career point on the assist he dished out to Ryan Johansen. This connection put the Predators up 1-0 to open the game.

This is a tough one to handle because the Predators actually played a pretty good game, especially at even strength. Moral victories aren’t going to get them out of this tailspin though, and now the St.Louis Blues are up next for back-to-back meetings. This thing might get uglier before it gets prettier.

3. 151. Final. 6. 104

Everyone take a deep breathe and don’t give up on this team just yet. They’re showing improvement and just need some luck to start going their way. They play like this every game and clean up the penalties, they’ll start winning again and build a winning streak. Mark it down.