Originally written on Fang Faction  |  Last updated 5/1/12

ATLANTA - DECEMBER 12: Andrei Kostitsyn #46 of the Montreal Canadiens against the Atlanta Thrashers at Philips Arena on December 12, 2009 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

Nashville, Tenn. (May 1, 2012) – Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile announced today that forwards Alexander Radulov and Andrei Kostitsyn will not play Game Three of the team’s Western Conference Semifinals series vs. the Phoenix Coyotes as result of violating team rules.

“The Nashville Predators have a few simple rules centered around doing the right things,” Poile said. “We have always operated with a team-first mentality and philosophy. Violating team rules is not fair to our team and their teammates.”

Here is some reaction from David Poile, Barry Trotz, Pekka Rinne and Ryan Suter.


Well, the Nashville Predators will be without Alexander Radulov and Andrei Kostitsyn for at least Game 3. Is that even a loss though?

These guys have been good, at best. Not great by any means. Andrei Kostitsyn has been okay this series except his Game 2 breakaway goal on Mike Smith. Other than that play, Kostitsyn hasn't been anything special. In the 2012 playoffs, Andrei Kostitsyn has had three goals and an assist.

Andrei Kostitsyn did not talk to the media about the situation.

Then, there is Alexander Radulov. Depending on how the Predators play in Game 3 tomorrow night, I don't expect him being back in Game 4 if they win. Radulov has just been mediocre since his return to the Nashville Predators. I am sick and tired of him trying to go one vs two, one vs three on defenders. Another thing that annoys me is when he enters the zone, instead of driving towards the net, Radulov cuts to the boards. 

Alexander Radulov hasn't been too productive this 2012 Stanley Cup Playoffs. We wanted him back on the Predators team to succeed in the playoffs. Unfortunately, he hasn't produced except his one goal in Game 5 against the Detroit Red Wings.

Loss, or Gain?

With Barry Trotz saying that Matt Halischuk, Craig Smith or Jordin Tootoo could be in the line up in Game 3, it gives me hope. When I mean "hope", I mean hope that the Predators' game returns to "Predators Hockey." Honestly, we haven't been playing that because of lazy players like Alexander Radulov.

Now with possibly Tootoo, Halischuk or Smith coming in, you should see a much more physical game and a better forechecking game. The way to beat the Phoenix Coyotes is to play "Predators Hockey", which I have said Nashville hasn't been doing. These three players would almost do anything to get in the lineup to help their team out in winning, especially Jordin Tootoo. Tootoo has only played one game in the 2012 playoffs.

I think the Nashville Predators outplay the Phoenix Coyotes in Game 3 and make the series go 2-1. The goals won't be there for the Coyotes. The solid backcheck will limit the Coyotes to one or two goals, not five. BIG plus for the Predators, as of now.

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