Are Nashville Predators Ready To Turn Corner Now That Offense Is Clicking?

By Jonathan Katje
Colin Wilson
Ron Chenoy – USA TODAY Sports

A Nashville Predators team that has struggled to score goals for most of the 2013-14 season certainly didn’t have any problems putting the puck in the net on Wednesday night, as they rolled to a 6-4 win over the Colorado Avalanche. The Predators became only the second team to beat the Avalanche in regulation this season, and after scoring 14 goals in their last three games suddenly look ready to turn the corner and start climbing the standings. With star goaltender Pekka Rinne still sidelined, Carter Hutton has filled in well but will need continued offensive support if his team is going to keep winning.

Colin Wilson scored twice for the Predators and ended up with a four-point night, while Viktor Stalberg, Paul Gaustad, Craig Smith and Gabriel Bourque also scored. Two of the Predators’ goals came on the power play, as that continues to be one of Nashville’s strongest aspects of their game. Stalberg’s goal was his first of the season in nine games, and hopefully a sign that the addition of the veteran winger will start paying off soon. Perhaps the most impressive part of the win over the Avalanche was that defensemen Shea Weber and Seth Jones didn’t factor into the scoring. Instead, it was Ryan Ellis (two assists), Roman Josi (assist) and Mattias Ekholm (assist) providing some offense from the blue line. Ten players finished the night with at least one point, making it one of the most balanced games the Predators have played all season.

Colorado battled back to tie the game three times, but Wilson’s second goal of the game was enough to put Nashville on top. Hutton made 27 saves to get his fourth win of the season, and got a lot of help from his teammates playing strong for an entire 60 minutes.

Jonathan Katje is an NHL featured columnist for Rant Sports. You can follow him on Twitter or add him to your circles on Google Plus.

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