Following Nashville's 2-1 shootout victory over Minnesota, there was no audible sigh of relief from the Predators. But it had to feel good that, without Shea Weber, they could beat a tough Minnesota team.
Though there is still no word on Weber and how he has progressed in his recovery from a concussion, Nashville's younger players stepped up in a big way. Defensemen Jonathon Blum, Ryan Ellis, and Roman Josi each played more than 19 minutes, and Blum had an assist on a goal by Jordin Tootoo.
Probably the most encouraging sign for the Predators was goaltender Pekka Rinne, who made 34 saves on 35 shots. In his previous three games, Rinne had allowed 12 total goals.
Still, it's tough to classify this one as a momentum-building win. It's more of a confidence boost for a team that has needed to answer questions about the injury status of its captain and leader.
The Predators travel to St. Louis on Friday for an important division matchup with the Blues. Until Weber returns, the Pr...