Friday, February 25, 2011

Quenneville Returns Blackhawks 3-0 Predators


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP)-Joel Quenneville spoke softly with his hoarse voice to his return behind the bench of the Chicago Blackhawks. The coach feels good, is just the price of losing a few games and come back for a game in a building Soldout.

"You can say I was far away. I can not talk now," Quenneville said.

Tomas Kopecky  and Marian Hossa  scored, and goaltender Corey Crawford stopped 31 shots and the Chicago Blackhawks defeated the Nashville Predators 3-0 on Thursday night for their first game the coach's back. Quenneville lost four games due to a bleeding ulcer.
Not that the Blackhawks missed much of a step without him. They won three without him, and now the defending champions have won three straight and four of five.

"It is entirely up to us what we do with it," Blackhawks defenseman Duncan Keith  said. "Tonight I thought was a great team effort. That's what it will take. "

No wonder, Quenneville said it was exciting to be back as a big game.
"I felt good the whole match. I saw behind me will be the second for the third voice, suddenly it seems that the first day of training camp or the first game of the regular season resumes. It 'was used for some time. You take up a few decibels. We realized back, "he said.

I only want the Predators offense back. They outshot Chicago 31-25, but were excluded from the second straight defeat and lost three straight and four of five.

"We had some chances but we could not find them," coach Barry Trotz said Nashville. "There were some loose pucks each period, we could not get a handle on."
Crawford scored his third shutout of the season. Patrick Sharp had an empty-netter with 31 seconds left and added an assist. The Blackhawks won their season series with the team that ousted in the first round of the playoffs last April, 3-1-2.

With this game, Nashville and Chicago are among the six teams with 70 points together and fighting for position in the Western Conference.

"I do not think we ever in a place where we should feel good," Quenneville said. "You look at the posts, and next opponent is right in the wheelhouse. Six teams on 70 points is pretty amazing."

Nashville is not content with having lost his lead on the pack.

"No more excuses," said the captain of Nashville Shea Weber. "There is no reason why we make mistakes. If we do, we must do for themselves and for their increase."
Predators opened urgently after giving four goals in the third period of a 4-0 loss to Columbus on Tuesday night. They took the first five shots of the match and spent much of the first half against Crawford.

Kopecky came as an extra attacker during a delayed penalty, and Sharp to him as Kopecky reached the right circle where he snapped a shot past goalie Pekka Rinne at 17:12 for a 1-0 lead and his 11th goal this season.

Chicago was nearly a second goal 1:25 into the second when Ryan Johnson crashed on the slopes with the potential to slide the disc over the goal line, but a careful examination of each goal. The track was another great save, blocking a shot in front of Keith's mid-season.
Predators stop with Crawford, Hossa helped seal the victory early in the third with 14 this season. He lifted a pass, gathered the puck and scored on a breakaway with a wrist under the right arm of Rinne at 2:35.

"Clearly, the breakaway by Hossa was hard to swallow," said Trotz.

Predators thought they had scored 5:59 remaining, but officials immediately sign off the door. David Legwand touched Crawford, knocking him off balance before Colin Wilson to tap the puck in Crawford was also a nice pad save Wilson about 1:20 remaining.