It was the first Edmonton Oilers game post the Zack Kassian suspension news and the first of his sitting until January 29th when he’d get the opportunity to hop back into the lineup versus the Flames. While the Oilers weren’t pleased with the news of Kassian’s suspension, they had a big game against the Nashville Predators at home to worry about and two important points to try and pick up. It was bound to be a challenge as the Predators came into the game with a 14-1 record against Edmonton since Oct. 29, 2014.
With losses by the Golden Knights and Canucks, plus a loss by the Flames on Sunday, Edmonton had a chance to make up a little ground against the Preds and did just that with a 4-2 win. Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl had three points each, while Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Josh Archibald picked up a goal apiece in the victory. Mike Smith made 30 saves for his fourth straight win in net and said the win, “Everything gets amplified, and as you creep towards playoffs you want to be playing your best hockey.”
The Oilers played a sound game all-around.
Forsberg Wowed With Pretty Goal
While Smith was impressed with the Oilers play, one player he wasn’t loving was Filip Forsberg who scored a beauty lacrosse-style goal in the first period and tried two other between the legs shots on net. He was all over the ice for the Predators and you could see while he got Smith on the first attempt, with each passing shot, Smith was giving Forsberg the evil eye.
“It’s fun to watch when it’s not you in net. But, when it ends up being you, you feel like more of an idiot.” In Smith’s defense, he almost made the save. But, he’ll take the two points and his fourth-straight win as the Oilers try to move on to games that get the closer and closer to another playoff birth.
Of note, this meeting was the first of three meetings this season between the two teams. They’ll play again on Feb. 8 at Rogers Place in Edmonton in Nashville on March 2.
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