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Nashville at St. Louis

Timonen powers Nashville's OT victory over slumping St. Louis

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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ST. LOUIS -- Given 11 power-play chances, the Nashville Predators finally cashed in.

Kimmo Timonen scored on a slap shot on a 4-on-3 advantage with 1:49 left in overtime for a 2-1 victory over the sagging St. Louis Blues on Sunday night.

"We felt if we kept working and skating and doing the right things, they were going to come unglued, and they did," coach Barry Trotz said. "They took way too many penalties, and every penalty was deserved.

"When you give us enough power plays, we'll score eventually."

Lee Stempniak ended a 15-game goal drought with a first-period power-play goal for Blues, who have lost 11 in a row. St. Louis is 0-4 under new coach Andy Murray, although the Blues have earned points in consecutive games against Nashville after losing in a shootout Saturday night.

Timonen's seventh goal came on a slap shot from the high slot that beat Manny Legace. The Predators' 11 power plays tied for the second-most in franchise history.

The Blues were 1-for-3 on the power play, and some players were upset.

"Don't ask me any questions about the refs," goalie Legace said. "I don't want to get in trouble."

But Murray said the Blues lost because "we weren't smart." He said he told players during a TV timeout to back off on big hits and scrums.

"We can complain that the referees should have made some calls the other way and that type of thing," Murray said. "We need to keep the feet moving and stay away from the referees and just play the game and get a win, and we failed to do that."

Dan Hamhuis' second goal of the season tied it for Nashville with 4:19 to go, ending Legace's bid for a shutout on the Predators' 27th shot. Nashville outshot the Blues 13-4 in the third period and 4-0 in overtime.

The Predators have won 11 straight over the Blues, including three one-goal games this season, and four in a row overall. Chris Mason made his 12th straight start and had 22 saves for Nashville.

"Last year we certainly had their number and this year too, we're finding ways to beat them," Hamhuis said. "I wouldn't say this year we've been the better team in all three games."

The Blues have not won since beating Detroit in a shootout on Nov. 24 and have been outscored 40-18 during the slump that cost the previous coach, Mike Kitchen, his job. They've scored the first goal in all four games under Murray and held off the Predators until late largely due to penalty-killing.

The last two games, the Predators are 2-for-19 on the power play. Yet they've come from behind to win each time.

"They're in a really tough stretch right now, that plays with your mind," Trotz said. "We just felt they'll be thinking about hat a little bit."

Legace has started on consecutive nights after missing four games on injured reserve because of a concussion, but was unable to preserve a lead either night. The Blues led 2-0 after the first period on Saturday before losing 3-2.

Stempniak scored on a power play at 14:50 of the first period. He broke in on the left side and beat Mason with a high shot only 25 seconds after Ryan Suter was whistled for hooking.

Notes

  • Predators F Alexander Radulov did not return after absorbing a big hit at 4:33 of the first. The team said it was an "upper body injury" but might not miss any games.
  • Bill Guerin, who assisted on Stempniak's goal, returned after missing Saturday's game with a bruised foot from blocking a shot. He has four goals and three assists in his last eight games.
  • The Blues' last shutout was Jan. 23, 2006, against Vancouver.
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
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Nashville goaltender Chris Mason saves 22 shots, allowing only one goal in his 12th straight start.  (AP)
Nashville goaltender Chris Mason saves 22 shots, allowing only one goal in his 12th straight start. (AP)
Scoreboard
Nashville  (22-8-3) «00112
St. Louis (7-19-6)10001
Three Stars
K. Timonen
NSH


Goals: 1
Assist(s): 0
C. Mason
NSH


Saves: 22
Save Pct.: .957
M. Legace
STL


Saves: 31
Save Pct.: .939

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Scoring Summary
1ST PERIOD
14:50Power Play - Lee Stempniak (9), Snap Shot - Assists: Bill Guerin, Eric Brewer
2ND PERIOD
None
3RD PERIOD
15:41Dan Hamhuis (2), Snap Shot - Assists: Scott Hartnell, Jerred Smithson
OT
03:11Power Play - Kimmo Timonen (7), Slap Shot - Assists: Paul Kariya, Steve Sullivan
Penalty Summary
1ST PERIOD
00:38Hinote: Charging - 2 min.
02:19Drake: Hooking - 2 min.
05:52Tkachuk: High sticking - 2 min.
14:25Suter: Hooking - 2 min.
17:31Rucinsky: Hooking - 2 min.
19:48Erat: Roughing - 2 min.
2ND PERIOD
02:59Drake: Hooking - 2 min.
06:27Weber: Holding the stick - 2 min.
06:27Cajanek: Cross Check - 2 min.
14:09Mayers: Hooking - 2 min.
16:57Hamhuis: Interference - 2 min.
19:59Drake: Cross Check - 2 min.
3RD PERIOD
00:39McClement: Slashing - 2 min.
12:29McKee: Holding - 2 min.
18:53Dvorak: Holding - 2 min.
OT
01:33Tkachuk: High sticking - 2 min.
SHOTS ON GOAL
 123OTT
Nashville9713433
St. Louis6134023
Goalies
GoalieMINSSGA
Chris Mason 63:11221
Manny Legace 63:11312
GAME INFORMATION
Attendance - 9318
Game Time - 63:11
Referees - Mike Hasenfratz, Marc Joannette
Line Judges - Lonnie Cameron, Brad Lazarowich
 
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