The Nashville Predators committed an unusual number of penalties and allowed a pair power-play goals in a 2-1 loss to the Colorado Avalanche on Friday at Colorado.
The Predators (29-19-3, 61 points) entered the game as the NHL’s least penalized team with an average of 8.8 penalty minutes per contest.
In their second game in as many nights they were penalized 10 times for 28 minutes and gave the Avalanche nine power plays.
Colorado (29-15-6, 64 points) converted with the man-advantage once in each of the first two periods. In the third, a goaltender interference call against Patric Hornqvist negated an apparent game-tying goal by Ryan Suter with 7:31 to play.
A pair of first-period fights – one expected, and one completely unexpected – enhanced those penalty numbers.
The initial one was between heavyweights Wade Belak of Nashville and David Koci of Colorado, who had a combined 16 fights this season. The second involved the Predators’ Steve Sullivan and Wojtek Wolski of the Avalanche.
For Sullivan, it was just his second fight in 815 career games. His only other fighting major came March 26, 1997 against San Jose’s Tony Granato when Sullivan was a member of the Toronto Maple Leafs. Wolski had no previous fighting majors.
Cody Franson scored Nashville’s only goal – also on the power play. That came at 8:47 of the second period, 1:22 after Colorado had gone in front 2-0.
The loss was the Predators’ third straight, which matched their longest skid since they lost six straight in the opening month of the season.