Rinne turns aside 35, Legwand bags two in comeback win…

Preds Sharks game

The Nashville Predators did something tonight that they hadn’t done since March 20. Tonight, against the San Jose Sharks, they overcame a two goal deficit to win.

In front of 17,562 at HP Pavilion in San Jose, California, the Preds beat the Sharks 4-3 in overtime.

Pekka Rinne made 35 saves in the overtime victory. He improves to 7-4-2 on the year.

The opening period saw 19 San Jose shots but it also saw 19 Rinne saves. The second stanza, however, saw some scoring.

David Legwand opened the scoring with a wrist shot from the point. Colin Wilson was planted in front and forced his checker, San Jose’s Torrey Mitchell, to deflect the puck on its way toward the net. The newly tumbling puck escaped Antti Niemi and put the visitors up 1-0.

The Sharks answered with a sweet spinning backhand pass from Logan Couture to Joe Pavelski. It was the Plover, Wisconsin native’s league leading ninth goal of the year.

A few minutes later, rookie defenseman Teemu Laakso took a horrible, unnecessary slashing penalty in his own zone that put the home team on the man advantage. Martin Havlat use Laakso’s timeout to score his first as a member of the Sharks.

San Jose gave Nashville a prime opportunity to tie the game and regain the momentum headed into the locker room for the second intermission but failed to convert on the power play.

The Sharks continued the onslaught early in the third period when Couture followed up on Pavelski’s dump-in. The goal was Couture’s third point of the contest.

Nashville proved they were still in this one, however, as Patric Hornqvist extended his goal-scoring streak to five games. Francis Bouillon took a Wilson pass and swung it over to Shea Weber who put a routine shot on net. The Preds’ 2009-10 goal scoring leader tapped home the rebound to cut the Sharks lead to one.

Ryan Suter tied the game at three when he tallied on the power play. The goal was controversial as the net seemed to be off it’s moorings for a full half minute until the goal but the goal was allowed to stand.

After surviving another Sharks power play in the final minute of regulation and the first minute of overtime, Legwand scored the overtime winner on a backhand pass from Bouillon.

Nashville will take the two points, hurdle the Sharks in the standings, and turn their attention to the back-to-back games against the Los Angeles Kings on Tuesday and the Anaheim Ducks  on Wednesday.

Puck drops at 9:30pm Central on Tuesday.

LEFTOVER THOUGHTS:
* Head Coach Barry Trotz coached his 500th career away game tonight.
Sergei Kostitysn, who did play against Phoenix, was held out of this game.
* Nick Spaling and Kevin Klein were also scratched due to injuries.
* Wilson led all Preds skaters with six shots on goal.
* Pavelski led all skaters with eight shots.
* Couture not only had three points but he won all six of his faceoff draws.
* Wilson and Legwand each finished with a plus-3 rating.
* Jon Blum was on the ice for all three San Jose goals.

THE THREE STARS OF THE GAME:
1) David Legwand (NSH)
2) Logan Couture (SJ)
3) Joe Pavelski (SJ)

PHOTO CREDIT: AP Leavitt // Twitter (permission pending)