Weber's 2 goals lead Predators over Blues 3-2
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) Nashville's defense quickly transitioned to offense and netted the decisive goal.
Shea Weber scored twice to lead the Predators to a 3-2 win over the St. Louis Blues on Tuesday night. Gabriel Bourque added a goal for Nashville, which has won two of three.
Chris Butler and T.J. Oshie scored for St. Louis, but the Blues lost for the fifth time in six games despite the return of No. 1 goalie Brian Elliott.
Elliott was activated from the injured list earlier Tuesday after he missed 14 games due to a lower-body injury. He made 44 saves.
''That is one way to get back into it, getting a lot of rubber,'' Elliott said. ''It is not the game we wanted to play, but they came at us, and we knew what to expect.''
A night after a shootout loss in Chicago, the Predators responded with a 47-shot effort.
''I think we were really strong, and what I liked was we got stronger,'' Nashville coach Peter Laviolette said. ''I really liked the way our guys really just kept their focus and kept their foot on the gas.''
Midway through the third period, while the Blues were on a power play, Roman Josi carried the puck down the left side on a 2-on-1 rush with Weber.
Inside the blue line, Josi found Weber, who fired a high shot past Elliott for a short-handed goal that gave the Predators a 3-2 lead. It was the Predators' first short-handed goal this season.
''Two defensemen on a 2-on-1 on a PK, and we scored. Everyone is going to be laughing about that,'' Weber said. ''Honestly, I thought, `Should I really go?' But it worked out, so we're lucky.''
It was also the first short-handed goal allowed by the Blues this season.
''They knocked us off the puck. The 2-on-1, they knocked us off the puck in their own zone which was the winning goal,'' St. Louis coach Ken Hitchcock said.
Weber also gave Nashville a 1-0 lead with 1:55 left in the first period.
With the puck in the left corner, Bourque took it away from Butler and found Olli Jokinen behind the Blues net. Jokinen skated to the right side and hit Weber with a pass as he came down from the right point unchecked and beat Elliott with a one-timer.
The goal was Weber's seventh of the season, but first since Nov. 20 - a span of 16 games.
Butler tied the game at 1 just 50 seconds into the second period.
David Backes won an offensive zone faceoff back to Butler at the right point, where his slap shot through traffic deflected off Weber's shin pad and beat goalie Pekka Rinne on the short side.
Oshie gave the Blues a 2-1 lead at 14:39 of the second on a give-and-go play that concluded with Oshie being alone on the left side from where he scored his sixth goal.
Bourque tied it at 16:06 of the second.
Paul Gaustad won a faceoff back to Jokinen above the right circle. Elliott stopped his shot, but Bourque skated hard to the net, kicked the puck onto his stick, and beat Elliott for his second of the season.
''It was tough to get it on my backhand, so I used my skate, and it worked pretty well,'' Bourque said. ''The rebound popped right on my skate, so I saw it all the way.''
The goal was scored just three seconds after Nashville rookie Filip Forsberg thought he tied the game on a shot from the left side. The goal was disallowed, and a video replay was inconclusive.
Rinne finished with 25 saves.
NOTES: Oshie played in his 400th NHL game. ... Nashville D Anton Volchenkov returned after missing five games due to a lower-body injury. ... Jokinen's assists were his first two of the season. ... The Predators haven't lost consecutive games this season.