Blackhawks edge Predators in shootout

Published on NewsOK Modified: April 2, 2013 at 12:13 am •  Published: April 2, 2013
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CHICAGO (AP) — Chicago coach Joel Quenneville's unusual choice for the shootout paid off against Nashville on Monday.

Defenseman Michal Rozsival scored in the fifth round of the tiebreaker after Jonathan Toews also connected in the shootout, and the Blackhawks pulled out a 3-2 win over Predators.

Rozsival, who hasn't scored a goal this season, beat Pekka Rinne with a high backhand shot in his first career shootout attempt.

"I was kind of lucky in practices for shootouts," Rozsival said. "I guess it's good to see the coach put trust in me."

Rozsival skated straight down the slot, went to his backhand, then lifted the puck over Rinne's right shoulder.

"That's the one move that I have," Rozsival said. "I've been kind of lucky in practice, so I went with it. It's nice to contribute offensively, even though it's during the shootout like this."

Chicago's Patrick Kane scored his team-leading 19th goal and rookie Brandon Saad scored in regulation to help the Blackhawks win their second straight. Kane has points in 10 of his past 11 games, posting seven goals and nine assists during the span.

The Blackhawks played again without two of their top forwards, Marian Hossa and Patrick Sharp, who are out with upper-body injuries. Hossa missed his sixth game and Sharp sat out his 11th.

And Chicago center Dave Bolland, along with Nashville left wing Gabriel Bourque, left Monday's game with injuries.

So Quenneville tried a new option in the shootout after calling on Toews, Kane, Andrew Shaw and Saad.

"I thought he went to his signature move tonight," Quenneville said. "I thought he made a great play."

The Predators were outshot 27-11 through the first two periods, but stormed back in the third to erase a 2-0 deficit on goals by Dave Legwand and rookie Taylor Beck and force overtime.

"We carried the pace and controlled the game for 40 minutes, and once you take a few shifts off or aren't sharp like you've been all game, they'll take advantage of it," Toews said. "We made a few mistakes and got caught flat on our heels, and it's a tie game."

Chicago's Corey Crawford made 25 saves as the Blackhawks improved to 27-5-3 and a league-leading 57 points, one more than Pittsburgh.

Rinne was sharp for a second straight game, stopping 38 shots through overtime. Craig Smith scored in the second round of the shootout for Nashville, but the Predators dropped their third straight (0-1-2).

Nashville lost 1-0 in overtime in its previous game on Saturday, with Rinne stopping 23 shots.

"We didn't play our best in the first and second, but we certainly brought it in the third," Beck said. "We easily could have got a third one there and won it in regulation."

But the Predators, who are in a fight for a playoff berth in the Western Conference, had to settle for one point.

"It's been happening way too much for us, but we have to be happy tonight," Rinne said. "We didn't play well and we got away with one point. I think that's a positive thing."

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