Lightning can’t finish off perfect road trip, fall to Predators
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Pekka Rinne is having a remarkable month for the Nashville Predators.
P.K. Subban scored twice in the second period and Rinne made 24 saves, helping Nashville to a 3-1 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning on Monday night.
Viktor Arvidsson also scored and Ryan Ellis added three assists for the Predators, winners of two of three.
"Just the way we played good defense and made good decisions with the puck led to good offense and ultimately staying out of our end keeping their chances down," Nashville coach Peter Laviolette said. "They are a very dangerous team, very fast, very skilled, and you really have to pay attention to what you are doing on the ice and I thought our guys were really detailed tonight."
Rinne improved to 6-1-2 in November. He made 15 saves through two periods and stopped 9 of 10 in the third to earn victory.
"I was able to make a couple of big saves in the first and that obviously gives you good confidence," Rinne said. "I’ve been feeling really good as of late, just trying to keep it rolling, and try not to focus too much on how many shots I’m going to get."
Tyler Johnson scored and Ben Bishop made 27 saves for Tampa Bay, which got its only defeat in the final game of a five-game trip.
"We didn’t have the puck enough, we didn’t create enough offensive zone time, and when you are defending a lot, chances are you are going to get a lot of penalties called against you," Lightning forward Brian Boyle said. "It’s not a good recipe for success."
Arvidsson scored the game’s first goal at 4:25 of the first.
Ryan Johansen won a faceoff against Ondrej Palat in the circle to the left of Bishop. The puck came back to Ellis, who passed to Roman Josi on the right boards. Josi threw the puck toward the net and Arvidsson was able to deflect it past Bishop on the far side.
Subban doubled the Nashville lead at 9:55 of the second.
With Nashville on a power play, Ellis had the puck atop the right circle and sent a pass to Subban above the high slot. Subban’s one-timer beat Bishop between the pads.
The three-point night matched a career high for Ellis.
Subban scored his second of the night 2 1/2 minutes later. From the left boards, Filip Forsberg found Subban, again in the high slot. Subban’s slap shot through traffic beat Bishop low to the stick side.
"The one thing about this team that has been different for me is there’s always guys in front of the net battling, creating traffic," Subban said. "As a guy who likes to shoot the puck and get it to the net, it’s good to know because when you get the puck, you don’t even have to look. You know there’s guys around the net or in front and we have success when we continue to do that."
The Lightning scored with 49.7 seconds left in the third on Johnson’s power-play goal with Bishop pulled for an extra attacker.
"It’s tough to score when you’re not generating too much," Tampa Bay coach Jon Cooper said. "We just looked like a tired group. We’ve got to regroup because that was a winnable hockey game for us and we let it slip."
NOTES: Forsberg played his 200th NHL game. … Subban has at least one point in his last five games played against Tampa Bay. … The Lightning are 0-3-0 against Western Conference teams this season. … Tampa Bay is 1-3-2 in its last six games against Nashville.
Lightning: Return home Wednesday night to face Philadelphia.
Predators: Face Dallas at home Wednesday night.