If Kyle Palmieri had been the only Ducks goal scorer tonight, it would have been enough, (and then some).
The Ducks devastated the Nashville Predators with a 5-1 win at home with 3 of their 5 goals coming from Kyle Palmieri. Palmieri would get his first NHL hat trick, (and a natural hat trick at that), and become the Ducks leading goal scorer with 7 goals for the season.
Scoring began early in the 1st period as Pekka Rinne went behind the net to play a puck only to be surprised by the speed of Emerson Etem. Etem was able to steal the puck and dish a quick pass to Nick Bonino who buried the puck in the empty net.
Kyle Palmieri would then get the best of both Shea Weber and Rinne as he showed off his speed to slip by Weber, and then dangled the puck past the poke check of Rinne. Palmieri guided the puck around Rinne’s leg pad, making it 2-0.
Palmieri continued to make the most of his time on the top line as Getzlaf got a pass to Perry behind the goal line, who instantaneously made a pass to the front of the net to a waiting Palmieri. Palmieri buried it for his second goal of the game and the Ducks’ 3rd. Tic-tac-Palmieri.
In the 2nd period the Ducks would start on the powerplay and yet again, Palmieri made his way to the net where he received a beautiful pass across the crease from Corey Perry. Palmieri would snap it past Rinne and get his first NHL career hat trick, putting the Ducks up 4-0.
About halfway through the 2nd Nashville would respond as the Predators were able to get numbers into the Anaheim zone and Craig Smith would receive a pass from Kevin Klein in front of the net, making it 4-1.
Towards the end of the 2nd however Anaheim would go again go on the powerplay and Saku Koivu would get his 6th goal of the year, knocking in a flailing puck that he, Bobby Ryan and Pekka Rinne were all competing for. Ducks up 5-1.
The 3rd period would start without Pekka Rinne as Steve Mason stepped in to replace him, and the game would end the way the 3rd period began: Anaheim, 5-1.
Kyle Palmieri had 3 goals and Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry both had 3 assists in the game, making them the three stars of the game. The Ducks powerplay has been looking absolutely lethal as of late as the Ducks now have 6 powerplay goals in two games. The Ducks played solid in their own zone as well as they gave up 1 less goal than in their previous meetings with Nashville and avoided overtime, (not to mention the shootout). It would be wrong to not acknowledge Viktor Fasth‘s performance as Fasth allowed only one goal on 21 shots, with a .952 save percentage. Fasth has his 3rd win over Nashville this season, and his 9th win of the season overall.
The Ducks will go back-to-back later this week as they face the Minnesota Wild at home Friday, followed by a visit to the Phoenix Coyotes on Saturday.
Tags: Anaheim Ducks Corey Perry Craig Smith Emerson Etem Game Recap Hat Trick Kevin Klein Kyle Palmieri Nashville Predators Natural Hat Trick Nick Bonino Pekka Rinne Ryan Getzlaf Saku Koivu Shea Weber Viktor Fasth