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Trio of 3rd period goals in four minutes help Predators bury Canucks

The Predators scored two goals in the span of just over two minutes as the Predators continued

Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

This one started ugly, and ended even worse. After opening the game with two quick goals, the Predators seemed to be in total control Tuesday night against the Canucks. A goal by Alex Edler in the 2nd period cut the lead in half, but Nashville unleashed on Eddie Lack in the 3rd period with three goals in just over four minutes in a 5-1 win.

The Predators have been one of the toughest teams to beat at home, improving to 17-2-1 at Bridgestone Arena this season.

Eddie Lack had a frustrating start, but rebounded nicely before his 3rd period collapse. Lack made 25 saves on the night, but let in three goals on nine shots during the final period.

1st Period

The Predators would go to the power play just over six minutes into the game when Derek Dorsett played the puck with too many men on the ice. After missing the net twice, Nashville opened the scoring on the power play as Craig Smith positioned himself right in front of the net to beat Eddie Lack. Must have been the earlier good karma he racked up after the anthems.

Just over two minutes later, Colin Wilson added to Nashville's lead as the Predators broke out on a 2-on-1 rush. When Lucas Sbisa rushed into the offensive zone to chase down a puck, Brad Richardson dropped back to the blue line and tried to knock the puck away from Mike Fisher, but missed, leaving Kevin Bieksa as the lone defender as neither Bieksa nor Lack were able to block Wilson's shot.

As the period wore on, the Predators continued to get good looks on net while the Canucks struggled to get much going offensively. Nashville nearly added a third goal, but the shot rang off the post, confirmed by video review. A 2-0 lead was already a big enough hole for the Canucks to dig themselves out of, a 3-0 lead would've essentially put the game away before we even reached the first intermission.

The first period was ugly for the Canucks, but could've been much worse if Lack hadn't continued to bail them out.

2nd Period

The Canucks finally snapped their scoring drought less than three minutes into the second period. After a chaotic series of shots in front of the net left Pekka Rinne without a stick, Alex Edler blasted a shot past Rinne to cut the Nashville lead in half. While Rinne was frantically trying to regain his composure after losing his stick, Chris Tanev found Edler who delivered the one-timer on net to beat Rinne. The goal was Vancouver's first since the first period of their 3-1 loss to the Panthers last Thursday.

Eddie Lack continued to come up with some big saves after a rocky start, including a big one with less than a second to go in the period with the Predators on the power play to keep it a 2-1 game heading into the final intermission. Lack stopped all nine shots he faced during the period.

3rd Period

Early in the third period, the Canucks had another good scoring chance when Chris Higgins broke into the offensive zone with a good scoring chance, but had his shot attempt knocked away while colliding into Rinne. After talking it over with trainers, Rinne left the game as Carter Hutton took over.

As soon as Hutton took over, the Canucks put pressure on Nashville, controlling the puck for an extended period of time, almost looking as if they were on the power play.

The Canucks would wind up going on the power play later in the period as Frankie Corrado was hit between the numbers along the boards. Unfortunately, the Canucks could never even get set up as the Predators killed off the power play easily to maintain their 2-1 lead midway through the 3rd period. Willie Desjardins was clearly frustrated at a missed opportunity to score against a cold goaltender coming off the bench.

Eddie Lack came up with another huge save when Corrado whiffed on a clearing attempt, allowing Mike Fisher to set up for a point-blank shot against Lack.

With less than seven minutes to play in the game, the Predators would tack on another goal to build their lead back up to two goals. Forsberg sent in a shot at a tough angle that slipped under Lack's arm, prompting a reaction that summed up the night perfectly.

Nashville would add to the lead when Lack tried to poke check the puck away from Mike Fisher and missed, allowing Fisher to wrap the puck back around to make it a 4-1 game with just over four minutes to play.

Things would go from bad to worse as Nashville scored their second power play goal of the night as Craig Smith knocked knocked in his second goal of the night to make it 5-1, capping off a span of three goals in 4:07. It was hard to believe that at one point in the 3rd period, this was a 2-1 game that the Canucks looked to be very much a part of.

What's next?

The Canucks now head to The City of Brotherly Love to take on the Flyers. The Canucks will be looking to snap a three-game losing streak while the Flyers have won three of their last four games. Thursday's matchup against Vancouver will be the back end of two in a row for the Flyers as they take on the Capitals Wednesday night.