NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- The Nashville Predators thought they
were headed to overtime once again and worried they were letting
another game slip away.
Then Scott Hartnell put his hand on the puck and made sure they
went home winners.
Hartnell scored with 22.5 seconds left and Tomas Vokoun stopped
31 shots in the Nashville Predators' 3-2 victory over the Edmonton
Oilers on Tuesday night. They scored all three goals in the third
period, including two in the final 1:55, to snap a five-game skid
that included three overtime losses.
"I almost had a heart attack," Nashville coach Barry Trotz
The Oilers weren't happy at all with Hartnell's goal, which came
after Greg Johnson flipped the puck at Hartnell, who then used his
right hand to knock it down and shovel it past Jussi Markkanen.
"He gloved it, put it down in front of him and knocked it in,"
Oilers left wing Ryan Smith said. "It looked like he took two or
three strides with it."
Edmonton coach Craig MacTavish took a timeout to regroup,
apparently hoping he might get a video review only to see the goal
stand and hand the Oilers their second straight loss after a
five-game winning streak.
"It's devastating for a team. We'll have to pick ourselves up
tomorrow," MacTavish said.
Kimmo Timonen's goal following a scrum in front of the crease
put Nashville up 2-1, but Edmonton countered when Jason Smith's
shot deflected off Smyth and past Vokoun with 58.4 seconds left.
Hartnell, who missed several good chances earlier in the game,
scored his fourth goal of the season from in front of the crease.
"We were able to battle back in the last 40 seconds and get rid
of this funk," Hartnell said. "The last few minutes were crazy,
highs and lows, sinking feelings when they got their goal."
The goalie said he'll have to see the replay on video but called
"All of a sudden, I turned around and the puck was in front. He
threw it down and knocked it in. I tried to stick my leg at (it),
but it still went in," Markkanen said.
Edmonton outshot Nashville 33-27 and kept the pressure on Vokoun
with 15 shots in the third period. The Predators, opening a
four-game homestand, have been outshot in each of their last 12
But Erat tied the game when skating along the right boards by
flipping the puck at the net and beating Markkanen to the right
side at 3:44 of the third.
The Oilers, who were outshot 14-2 in the first period in their
4-0 loss at Dallas on Monday night, came out with much more energy
against Nashville. They took nine of the first 11 shots, but Vokoun
kept them scoreless with saves that included a pad stop off a
power-play shot from Stoll from near the blue line.
Edmonton's Michael Peca was scratched for a fourth straight
game because of a concussion. ... Nashville scratched Steve
Sullivan (strained groin) and Scot Nichol (bruised foot). The
Predators announced earlier that forward Scott Walker will be out
up to 10 weeks with surgery for a sports hernia. ... Vokoun has
faced at least 30 shots in each of his last eight games.