The Nashville Predators came within 90 seconds of a dubious standard.
Patric Hornqvist’s goal Tuesday was not enough to lift the Predators to a victory over the New York Islanders (they lost 3-0) but it stopped their scoreless streak short of the record they set last season. The final tally on this goal-less run was 174 minutes, 48 seconds and included eight full periods, including the first two against the Islanders, without a goal.
“We're going through a tough time,” coach Barry Trotz said, according to NHL.com. “We have to tighten up and put together better efforts.”
A comparison between last season’s franchise-record streak and this week’s near miss:
• Length: 176:18
• Games (full and partial): 3
• Opponents: Minnesota, Chicago, San Jose
• Record in included games: 1-1-1
• How it started: Paul Gaustad scored at 10:11 of the first period in a game at Minnesota. The Wild eventually tied it in the second period and won it with 39 seconds to play in overtime. Ryan Suter assisted on both Minnesota goals.
• How it ended: Colin Wilson scored 2:08 into overtime and gave the Predators a 1-0 victory at home over San Jose.
• The big picture: Nashville was not the only team that had trouble scoring at that point. Their opponents did too. Pekka Rinne made 25 saves against San Jose for his second shutout in four starts. Two nights later he made it three in five with 19 saves in a 3-0 victory Phoenix, and the Predators ultimately posted a shutout streak of 155:06, which is second longest in franchise history.
• Length: 174:48
• Games (full and partial): 4
• Opponents: Colorado, Winnipeg, New Jersey, N.Y. Islanders
• Record in included games: 1-3-0
• How it started: Gabriel Bourque scored his first goal of the season, an empty-netter with 18 seconds to play that capped a 6-4 victory over the Avalanche.
• How it ended: Patric Hornqvist scored with a wrist shot with 5:30 to play against the Islanders.
• The big picture: The Predators did little to bolster their offense during the offseason so some struggles to score were to be expected. There was no indication that they were at hand, though, given that Nashville preceded the drought with 14 goals in three games – against some good opposition, no less.