The Nashville Predators are in a serious push for a playoff spot, and it appears that Juuse Saros of Forssa, Finland could be the goaltender they will use primarily to carry the team forward. On Saturday, Saros recorded his fourth shutout of the season and second of the week as the Predators defeated the Dallas Stars 1-0 at the American Airlines Center in Dallas, TX.
This was also the second time this week Saros shutout the Stars. On Thursday, Saros made 33 saves as the Predators won 2-0.
In Saturday’s win over the Stars, Saros made four saves more than he did in his previous shutout as he made 37 saves. He made nine saves in the first period and 14 saves each in the second period and third period. Tyler Seguin of Brampton, Ontario led the Stars with six shots on goal.
The Predators got their only goal of the game at 10:29 of the second period. It came from defenseman Ryan Ellis of Hamilton, Ontario on the power play from Matt Duchene of Haliburton, Ontario and Viktor Arvidsson of Kusmark, Sweden. Due to the fact the goal came on the power play, nobody in the hockey game was a plus or a minus.
On the season, Saros has a record of 16 wins, 12 regulation losses and four losses in extra time with four shutouts. He has a goals against average of 2.72 and a save percentage of .913. Saros’s two other shutouts this season came in a 1-0 Nashville win over the Winnipeg Jets on January 12 and in a 5-0 Nashville win over the New York Islanders on February 13. It was also Saros’s 11th shutout of his career.
For 11 years from 2008 to 2019, the Predators were Pekka Rinne’s team when it came to goaltending. Now it is clear that we are seeing a changing of the guard as Rinne’s save percentage this season is a career worst .895.
Nashville is currently in a three-way tie with the Winnipeg Jets and Vancouver Canucks for seventh place in the Western Conference. They all have 76 points.