Recently injured Predators pay dividends in victory over Atlanta

Saturday, January 30, 2010 at 10:38pm
Staff reports

Jason Arnott scored seven seconds into the third period and lifted the Nashville Predators to a 4-3 victory over the Atlanta Thrashers on Saturday at the Sommet Center.

The victory snapped the Predators’ five-game overall losing streak and their two-game skid at home.

Arnott’s goal, his 13th of the season, was just his second since Dec. 10. Each of his last two, though, have been game-winners.

Joel Ward and Martin Erat had a goal and an assist, and Pekka Rinne made 23 saves for his 19th win of the season. Both Ward and Erat had the primary assist on the other’s goal.

Ward had missed the previous three games with a groin injury but started the scoring with his ninth goal of the season just 3:59 into the contest.

Erat made it 3-1 11:12 into the second period. It was his 18th goal of the season, which already is the third-highest total of his career.

Jerred Smithson, who recently returned from an injury which sidelined him for almost a month, added a goal, and Jordin Tootoo, who also was injured for much of December and January, had an assist.

Even Arnott missed four games this month. His goal, with assists from Cody Franson and Steve Sullivan, was his first since he returned to the lineup.