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Chicago at Nashville

Mazanec makes 39 saves as Preds surge past Blackhawks

CBSSports.com wire reports
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The Nashville Predators were happy to be back home, even if it was for just one game.

Rookie Marek Mazanec made 39 saves for his first NHL victory and the Predators beat the Chicago Blackhawks 7-2 Saturday night.

Craig Smith scored a goal and added two assists for the Predators. The three-point game equaled the Madison, Wis. native's career high.

Matt Cullen, Nick Spaling, Patric Hornqvist, Viktor Stalberg, Mike Fisher and Shea Weber also scored for Nashville, which ended a four-game losing streak.

Patrick Kane and Brandon Pirri had the goals for Chicago, which had its four-game winning streak snapped.

Making his second start in as many days, Mazanec stopped seven shots in the first, 17 in the second, and 15 in the third.

"It's awesome," Mazanec said. "I am really happy. We played a really good game."

The 22-year-old Czech is playing his first season in North America.

Nashville played its first home game since Oct. 26, having just returned from a seven-game road trip that spanned 17 days. They head back out on the road for games in Detroit and Toronto next week.

"Good response by our guys today," Nashville coach Barry Trotz said. "We looked at this game as the end of road trip, not the first home game really because of the quick turnover and obviously playing the Stanley Cup champions."

Cullen scored the game's first goal at 7:28 of the opening period.

From the slot, Smith's slap shot was stopped by Chicago goaltender Nikolai Khabibulin. The rebound fell to the right of the net, and a diving Cullen poked the rebound in for his third goal of the season.

Less than a minute later, Spaling doubled the Nashville lead when his wrist shot from the right faceoff dot slipped just underneath the crossbar at 8:25.

Later in the first, Khabibulin left the game with an injury after making stops on shots from Weber and Hornqvist. Corey Crawford replaced Khabibulin at 15:33.

Following the game, the Blackhawks said that Khabibulin had a lower-body injury, but had no further update.

"We got outworked," Chicago captain Jonathan Toews said. "We didn't do the things we needed to. We didn't win our battles, especially in the right areas we needed to win them in."

Hornqvist's sixth goal of the season came at 9:02 of the second to give Nashville a 3-0 lead.

With Nashville on a power play, Roman Josi's slap shot from just above the left faceoff circle was tipped by Hornqvist in front and beat Crawford on the short side.

Smith and Kane traded goals late in the second, with Smith connecting at 18:18 and Kane answering 26 seconds later.

"We just stayed positive and erased the last couple of games," Smith said. "We just kind of refreshed for this game. It's also nice to be home. It's a good feeling."

Pirri briefly cut the Nashville lead to 4-2 at 6:14 of the third, but Stalberg, the former Blackhawk, struck back at 6:29. Fisher added his at 12:19.

"It was a free night for them offensively, we were very gracious," Chicago coach Joel Quenneville said. "We know what it takes and we know they're going to be desperate."

Weber scored on the power play at 14:07. His assist earlier in the game on Hornqvist's goal was his 300th career NHL point.

The seven goals were a season high for Nashville.

Notes

Mazanec became just the eighth goaltender in Nashville franchise history to record a victory. ... Nashville C Filip Forsberg missed the game with an upper-body injury. He is listed day to day. ... Kane has at least one point in his past six games. ... Chicago RW Marian Hossa missed the game with a lower-body injury.

Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC is strictly prohibited.
 
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Scoreboard
Chicago (13-3-4)0112
Nashville  (9-9-2) «2237
Three Stars
C. Smith
NSH


Goals: 1
Assist(s): 2
S. Weber
NSH


Goals: 1
Assist(s): 1
M. Mazanec
NSH


Saves: 39
Save Pct.: .951
Scoring Summary
1ST PERIOD
07:28 - Matt Cullen (3), Tip-In. Assist: Smith, Jones
08:25 - Nick Spaling (2), Snap Shot. Assist: Smith, Ellis
2ND PERIOD
09:02Power Play - Patric Hornqvist (6), Tip-In. Assist: Josi, Weber
18:18 - Craig Smith (4), Backhand Shot. Assist: Cullen
18:44 - Patrick Kane (11), Wrist Shot. Assist: Bollig, Keith
3RD PERIOD
06:14 - Brandon Pirri (5), Tip-In. Assist: Seabrook, Versteeg
06:29 - Viktor Stalberg (2), Wrist Shot. Assist: Bourque, Legwand
12:19 - Mike Fisher (3), Wrist Shot. Assist: Hornqvist
14:07Power Play - Shea Weber (5), Slap Shot. Assist: Josi, Legwand
Penalty Summary
1ST PERIOD
02:06Clune, 5 min, Fighting
02:06Brookbank, 5 min, Fighting
02:06Brookbank, 2 min, Roughing
12:17Smith, 2 min, Hooking
13:42Pirri, 2 min, High sticking
2ND PERIOD
06:14Versteeg, 2 min, Roughing
08:05Bollig, 2 min, Delaying Game
10:24Weber, 2 min, Interference
14:54Bartley, 2 min, High sticking
3RD PERIOD
04:10Legwand, 2 min, High sticking
13:44Bickell, 2 min, Tripping
Shots On Goal
 123T
CHI7181641
NSH1013730
Goalies
GoalieMINSSGA
Nikolai Khabibulin15:2362
Marek Mazanec60:00392
Game Information
Attendance - 17113
Referees - Francis Charron, Dave Jackson
Linesmen - Brad Lazarowich, Darren Gibbs
 
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Tor 4
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NJ 4
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Mon 0
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Cal 2