Josi’s goal, 2 assists lead Predators past Blues 6-2
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Roman Josi had a goal and two assists, and the Nashville Predators defeated the St. Louis Blues 6-2 on Thursday night to stop their five-game losing streak.
Michael McCarron, Zach Sanford, Tanner Jeannot, Ryan Johansen and Mikael Granlund also scored for the Predators, and Juuse Saros made 33 saves.
Filip Forsberg and Matt Duchene each had three assists, and Cole Smith added two.
Robert Thomas and Brayden Schenn scored and Thomas Greiss made 35 saves for St. Louis, which has lost three straight.
McCarron and Sanford scored 37 seconds apart late in the second period to send the Predators to the second intermission with a 3-2 lead. Both scored their first goals of the season.
“We were in complete control of the game,” Blues coach Craig Berube said. “We were up 2-1. Two goals around our net. We’ve got to be a little harder there.”
Johansen added an insurance goal at 1:11 of the third to make it 4-2. Josi scored his first of the season at 13:06 on the power play and Granlund scored an empty-net goal with just under five minutes remaining.
“Yeah, not too hot of a start for me,” Josi said. “But I think sometimes it’s funny in hockey, you try to focus on your game, you try to focus on the process and I think it’s all about how you feel about your game and how you’re playing. Sometimes they go in, sometimes they don’t.”
Thomas scored the game’s first goal at 1:07 of the opening period on the first Blues shot of the game.
Jeannot made it 1-all at 16:56 of the first when he tapped home a rebound on the right side.
St. Louis regained the lead at 6:24 of the second on Schenn’s power-play goal, a one-timer from the right circle.
“We have a lot of guys that are capable of scoring goals in here,” Schenn said. “We know the goals are going to come. We’re not worried. You’ve just got to keep on fighting and battling through.”
Dissatisfied with his team’s performance since returning from two season-opening wins in Prague, Predators coach John Hynes switched up his lines. Granlund had centered the team’s top line between wingers Forsberg and Duchene. Johansen moved up to center them on Thursday. The change appeared to work, as Forsberg and Duchene assisted on Johansen’s third-period goal.
Granlund was moved to right wing on a line centered by Cody Glass with Nino Niederreiter on the left side.
After the game, Hynes credited his third and fourth lines for getting the team going.
“You want to try to have some lines that have some identities as best you can, and those guys came through tonight,” he said.
Nashville winger Eeli Tolvanen was a healthy scratch for the first time this season.
PERFECT NO MORE
Josi’s third-period goal was the first given up by the Blues’ penalty kill in 13 opportunities this season.
Blues: Host the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday.
Predators: Host the Washington Capitals on Saturday.
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