Saros makes 46 saves, surging Predators blank Oilers 4-0
EDMONTON, Alberta (AP) Juuse Saros definitely made the most of a rare start in net for Nashville.
Saros stopped 46 shots for his second career shutout and Kyle Turris had a goal and an assist as the Predators kept up their torrid pace of late with a 4-0 victory over the Edmonton Oilers on Thursday night.
”It felt really good,” said Saros, who set a franchise record for most saves in a shutout. ”I try to help my team as much as I can. I like to see a lot of pucks. You don’t think as much and you just go with the flow.”
Pontus Aberg, Kevin Fiala and Roman Josi also scored for the Predators (20-7-4), who are 10-1-2 in their last 13 games and 15-2-2 in the past 19. They’ve also won 10 straight against Edmonton.
Saros started in place of No. 1 goalie Pekka Rinne. Nashville coach Peter Laviolette credited the 22-year-old Finnish netminder for keeping his team in the game despite a tough start.
”He was very important, very good,” Laviolette said. ”In the first period when you get outshot 22-4 and you walk into the room with the game still tied 0-0, you are thankful that your goalie was ready to play and was able to give you an opportunity to win a hockey game. Without him playing the way he did in the first period, we don’t have a chance.”
Laurent Brossoit made 19 saves but the Oilers (13-17-2) lost for the second time in three games.
”We’re doing the right things,” forward Pat Maroon said. ”Every line is buzzing around, we’re all having chemistry. … It’s weird. We score six goals, then the next game we score zero. Then the next game we score seven, and the next game, zero.
”I know the fans are frustrated, and the media are looking for answers. But the guys, the last four games, that’s the best hockey we’ve played in a long time.”
There was no scoring in the first period even though Edmonton registered 18 more shots than the Predators.
Nashville’s fifth shot ended up going in as a high shot by Mattias Ekholm was tipped by Aberg past Brossoit three minutes into the second period. The goal was upheld following a video review for a high stick on the deflection.
Nashville added to its lead with a power-play goal five minutes later as a shot hit an Oilers defender and landed on the doorstep before being tapped in by Fiala.
The Predators made it 3-0 with five minutes left in the second when Turris rifled a shot to the top corner for his seventh of the season. A couple of minutes later, Josi scored from the side of the net on a two-man advantage.
The shots after 40 minutes were 33-13 in favor of Edmonton, and 46-23 following the scoreless third period.
”Juuse won that game for us,” Josi said.
NOTES: It was the first meeting of the season between the teams, who will face each other twice more. … The Predators have scored three or more goals in 18 of their last 19 games. … Edmonton starting goalie Cam Talbot practiced and could return as soon as Saturday against the Wild.
Predators: Wrap up a three-game trip Saturday in Calgary
Oilers: At the Minnesota Wild on Saturday.
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