Predators use fast start in 4-2 win over Coyotes
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Nick Spaling, Mike Fisher and Gabriel Bourque scored first-period goals to lead the Nashville Predators to a 4-2 win over the Phoenix Coyotes on Monday night.
Shea Weber also scored for Nashville, which has won four of five.
Mikkel Boedker and Tim Kennedy scored for the Coyotes, who lost their third straight.
Spaling scored the game's first goal at 1:02 of the opening period.
From the right side, Matt Cullen's initial shot was denied by Phoenix goaltender Mike Smith. But skating through the slot, Spaling picked up the rebound and put it over Smith's right shoulder.
Craig Smith also assisted on the goal for Nashville, his ninth of the season.
Fisher doubled the Nashville lead at 8:22 of the first.
From below the goal line to the right of the Phoenix net, Colin Wilson found Fisher in the right circle, where he beat Smith low to the stick side.
Fisher's goal came just seconds after Phoenix captain Shane Doan rang a shot off the right post.
Bourque made it 3-0 at 18:27 of the first when he converted off a nice pass from Viktor Stalberg with Nashville on a 2-on-1 break.
Phoenix made it 3-1 at 9:34 of the second when Vermette's wrister from the right faceoff dot was tipped in by Boedker and beat Nashville goaltender Marek Mazanec between the pads.
Kennedy got the Coyotes within a goal at 13:00 of the second when he grabbed a loose puck and beat Mazanec for his first of the season.
Weber added an empty-netter with 34.3 seconds remaining. Weber was just attempting to clear the puck from inside the Nashville zone, but his bank shot caromed perfectly off the boards and into the vacated Phoenix goal.
Doan did not return to the bench for the start of the third period. The team announced that he would not return to the game due to a lower-body injury.
Notes: Predators RW Patric Hornqvist missed the game with an upper-body injury sustained Saturday night. ... Nashville has not allowed a power-play goal in its past five games. ... Phoenix has been outscored 25-15 in the first period this season.