Originally posted on Fox Sports Tennessee  |  Last updated 10/26/11
It has been a process for the Predators this season. Their two wins in the season-opening weekend proved to be somewhat of a mirage as they went winless in their next four games. Pekka Rinne then stole a game in Calgary, but they couldn't quite pull one out against a deep San Jose Sharks team on Tuesday night. Just 57 seconds after Nashville tied the game late in the third period, the Predators relaxed a bit, and San Jose's Joe Pavelski scored the eventual game-winner. Pavelski later added an empty-net goal for a 3-1 Sharks victory. "That's something that you have to learn from -- especially with a real, hard-working goal. They're going to have a push, and you've got to come out with a big shift there," Nashville Coach Barry Trotz said. "They scored right away. It swings momentum." Nashville was grossly outshot again, this time 36-20. But the Predators didn't believe San Jose had the same amount of scoring chances as some of their other opponents in previous games. Still, Nashville is probably tired of moral victories. The Predators haven't won five of their last six games and are still winless at home. The Predators will have two more chances this week, against Tampa Bay on Thursday and Anaheim on Saturday. NOTES, QUOTES There were no major scary moments for center Mike Fisher in his first game back from summer shoulder surgery. He played 19:30, won 12 of 23 faceoffs and notched an assist. The toughest moments for Fisher were actually on special teams. "The biggest test was on the power play, trying to get position in front of the net," Fisher said. "I felt pretty good actually." Defenseman Francis Bouillon did have a scary moment. In the second period, San Jose left winger Brad Winchester hit Bouillon, who had been out since Jan. 16 with a concussion, high near his face. But Bouillon kept playing, and finished with 17:32 of ice-time. "I was really impressed with Frankie," Nashville coach Barry Trotz said. "You can see that he's a veteran, poised player. He wasn't backing down from anybody; he didn't play shy." RW Martin Erat played coy in regards to his upper-body injury, which he suffered against Columbus in Nashville's season-opening win. He didn't say exactly what it was, but he did mention that there was no timetable for a return to game action. "It's doing pretty well," Erat said. "It takes time and I hope skating with the team helps me with the recovery." ROSTER REPORT C Craig Smith scored his first goal since the Predators' second game of the season. C David Legwand continued his cold streak. Legwand hasn't notched a point in four games. D Ryan Suter had his lowest ice-time total of the season at 25:47. MEDICAL WATCH RW Martin Erat (upper-body) is listed as day-to-day and could play in Nashville's final two home games this week. C Cal O'Reilly (groin) is day-to-day. QUOTE TO NOTE "In terms of quality chances, they didn't have that many at all." -- Coach Barry Trotz, assessing the San Jose offense in the Sharks' 3-1 victory over Nashville.
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