NHL Game Summary - Anaheim at Nashville
(Saturday, October 9th)
Final Score: Nashville 4, Anaheim 1
Nashville, TN (Sports Network) - Steve Sullivan notched the go-ahead goal, as Nashville opened its 2010-11 season with a 4-1 win over Anaheim at Bridgestone Arena.
Marcel Goc, Patric Hornqvist and David Legwand added goals, and Pekka Rinne turned aside 29 shots to earn the win for the Predators, who improved to 6-6 in season openers.
"Our special teams were outstanding tonight and won us the game," said Nashville head coach Barry Trotz. "We had a lot of zone time on the power play and we're able to keep them from setting anything up when they were on the power play. Special teams will win you the game and they did tonight."
Saku Koivu scored the only goal, while Jonas Hiller stopped 45 shots for the Ducks, who were blanked 4-0 by Detroit in their season starter Friday.
Nashville finished last season 47-29-6 and in seventh place in the Western Conference before bowing out in the first round of the playoffs to eventual Stanley Cup champion Chicago, while the Ducks' late season push for the postseason fell short and they wound up finishing in 11th place in the West.
Sullivan's power-play tally put the Preds back in the lead for good at 8:33 of the second period with a one-timer from the top of left circle.
Hornqvist batted home a rebound out of mid air off a Shea Weber shot from the point to give the hosts a two-goal cushion with just under four minutes remaining in the period.
Rinne left the ice 2 1/2 minutes into the third period after a collision in his crease and was replaced by Anders Lindback, who denied all seven Anaheim shots he faced.
Legwand took a pass on the right side of the net and his initial backhand attempt was stopped by a sprawling Hiller, who couldn't recover when Legwand corraled the rebound and flipped over the prone netminder with 7:31 to play.
Goc started the scoring 4:10 into the middle stanza with a wrist shot from the right side that beat Hiller.
Saku Koivu took a pass in the slot and wristed it past Rinne 75 seconds later to get the game even at one.
Nashville has won five of its last seven season starters...Rinne improved to 4-2-2 in his career against Anaheim...Sullivan added an assist and has 33 points in 40 games against the Ducks..Hiller fell to 2-4-0 in his career against Nashville...The Ducks completed the first of 15 back-to-back games this season.
10/10 01:53:55 ET