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Sully Comes Up Big and Random Notes

October 15, 2010, 9:30 AM ET [ Comments]
Paul McCann
Nashville Predators Blogger •Predators Radio Network • RSSArchiveCONTACT
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From time to time I will showcase one of the sponsors of this hockey endevour… today it’s SouthSide Grill in South Nashville… check out their website here. It’s a great place to grab a casual lunch or a nice dinner with someone special. They are located right off Nolensville Road, about two miles south of Old Hickory Blvd. in the Sugar Valley Market Place.

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Say what you will, but Steve Sullivan has still got it. After battling back from back issues that cost him a season and a half, Sullivan is off to a torrid start to the 2010-11 campaign with four goals in his first three games. His two goals last night put St. Louis behind the 8 ball and led the team to a 4-3 victory and their first 3-0 start since 05-06. Sullivan almost iced a Hattie with a breakaway at the end of the first period, but Blues goaltender Jaroslav Halak was up to the task and stopped his bid.

The Predators have certainly come out flying this season with some preseason concern factors being addressed early…

> Power Play - The Predators’ Power Play is converting at a blistering 30.8%. You can see the difference, it is more aggressive and is not afraid to put the puck on the net.

> Health – The depth of this team was a question at the start of the season, the Preds have survived an injury to their starting goaltender, main free agent acquisition and two other top line forwards. So far, so good…

> Scoring – The team is sixth in the NHL in goals per game (3.67) one spot ahead of Saturday night’s opponent, the high-scoring Washington Capitals. The Sullivan/Hornqvist/O’Reilly line is really clicking.

> Shots on Goal – Nashville does seem more unafraid to put the puck on net, averaging almost 33 shots per game.

All of that is very good news, and I am not trying to be a buzzkill, but there are some concern items being covered by the teams 3-0 start…

> Penalty Kill – The PK has allowed three goals on nine attempts. 67% is not good and not a recipe for long term success.

> Weak Second Periods – A oldie, but a goodie… the last two games have featured some fairly sloppy play in the middle frame and some simply outstanding play from Anders Lindback has kept the team on track.

Addressing these issues will continue to drive improvements as this team begins a dangerous stretch of games with Washington, Calgary, Pittsburgh and Dallas over the next eight days. Pred Nation keeps repeating to itself, “it’s only three games… it’s only three games” but they were three good ones to get this season started right. Not trying to get ahead of ourselves here, but something special may be developing in Music City.


Random Notes

- The Tampa Bay Lightning are off to a 3-0 start, impressive win last night in Philly. Philly fans greeted former Flyer Simon Gagne with a very nice salute.

- I knew that the Calgary Flames might be offensively challenged again, but only three goals in three games? Yuck…

- Ottawa got their first win last night, after Pascal Leclaire went down with another injury. Significant stat I saw on NHL On the Fly this morning… Leclaire has missed significant time in every season he has played.

- The Columbus Blue Jackets are back in action tonight after their European trip with their home opener against Chicago.

- The Pittsburgh Penguins go for their first win in their new building tonight with a 6pm CDT tilt against the New York Islanders.

- The Dallas Stars are surprising folks early on this season as well with a nice win over the Detroit Red Wings last night. Dallas fans gave Mike Modano a nice welcome back.


You are invited to follow me on Twitter. Search for PredPAPaul… Not only will I be updating when I get news or updates… I’ll also be updating with starting lineups and scratches during Pred home games, also I’ll be supplying information and explanations from the PA box.



SlapShot Radio’s is back for season three and we have a great show on tap this week featuring legendary Pittsburgh Penguin broadcaster Mike Lange.

It’s all on SlapShot Radio, SportsRadio 560 WNSR, every Wednesday at 6pm… listen online or on podcast at www.slapshotradio.com

For the most updated guest information go to the SlapShot Radio website.

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