NASHVILLE, Tenn. - The Nashville Predators brought Peter Laviolette in to rev up their offence, and the second coach in franchise history already is paying off.Craig Smith, Shea Weber and Eric Nystrom all scored in the third period, and the Predators beat the Ottawa Senators 3-2 Thursday night, giving Laviolette a win in his Nashville debut. It was an immediate change for a team that went 3-28-4 last season when trailing after two periods.I think its important for a team to establish that they can win in the third period, Laviolette said. That was probably the most important thing. They battled back, they didnt surrender. They just kept pushing through, and you have to give them a lot of credit. They just kept their foot on the gas.Smith tied it at 1 with his power-play goal 1:36 into the third of the season opener for both teams. Then Weber, the three-time Norris Trophy finalist, skated around the net before flipping a backhander over a diving Craig Anderson for the lead. Nystrom scored at 10:20, and Filip Forsberg and Paul Gaustad each had two assists.Kyle Turris and Alex Chiasson each scored for Ottawa. Chiassons power-play goal gave the Senators a chance to rally within the final two minutes. Nashville goaltender Pekka Rinne stopped a flurry in front of the net with about 30 seconds left to preserve the victory.Overall, its a just a good start, Rinne said. I thought it wasnt a fluky win. I thought we deserved it. We played really well.The Predators let coach Barry Trotz go after missing the playoffs in April for a second straight season, and general manager David Poile hired Laviolette as the second coach in the franchises history. The Predators also brought in James Neal, Mike Ribeiro, Olli Jokinen and Derek Roy to help in the rugged Western Conference.Nashville outshot Ottawa 37-20 overall and 23-14 through two periods. But the Predators remained scoreless until Roy helped get the Predators started with an assist on Smiths goal to get the sellout crowd going.Its a lot of fun, Nystrom said. Its good to get the building to erupt, and its a good start at home.Fans even gave David Legwand a€” the first draft pick in Nashville history a€” a standing ovation when a video honouring his Predators career played in the first period. Traded to Detroit late last season, Legwand now is with the Senators and was preparing to take the faceoff when the video played. But he skated to the wrong penalty box in the second period.Its tough going to one for 15 years, and then youve got to go to the other one, Legwand said. Its over and done with. Im happy that its over and done with and I move forward.The Senators are used to opening on the road with this their fourth straight season away from Ottawa at the start, and this is the first of a three-game road swing.Anderson stopped 23 shots through the first two periods and was protecting a 1-0 lead into the third before giving up the quick goals to Weber and Nystrom.I thought we were just in a little bit too much of a hurry to get going in the offensive side of it until we had things under control on the defensive side of it, Ottawa coach Paul MacLean said.The Predators opened the third finishing a power play, and Forsberg found Smith at the left post with a cross-ice pass. Smith tapped the puck past Anderson to tie it up.Webers goal is an example of Laviolette giving defenceman permission to join the rush, but the coach credited the defencemans instincts on his goal as well.There was a look there that he saw and took it and ended up coming out the other way and finding its way in, Laviolette said. But certainly our defencemen they can push from the backside.The Senators had a final chance when Smith went to the penalty box with 1:57 left for hooking. They just couldnt beat Rinne, the two-time Vezina Trophy finalist who played only 24 games last season because of an infected hip.NOTES: The Predators improved to 8-7-1 in season openers. ... Weber now has 107 goals since the start of the 2008-09 season. ... Both games between these teams went to extra time last season. The Predators now are 4-4-1 in Nashville against Ottawa. ... Roy now has eight points in nine season openers (3 goals, 5 assists). Charles Barkley Jersey
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.com) - Patrik Elias registered the winner in the shootout as New Jersey nipped Toronto 2-1 at Prudential Center on Wednesday. CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -- Marcus Paige and his North Carolina teammates have endured so many wild swings -- big wins, surprising losses, NCAA drama -- that no one can blame their Hall of Fame coach for wondering whats next. And yet, a month after sitting at 0-3 in the Atlantic Coast Conference, the Tar Heels are surging after a rousing comeback against their fiercest rival that had their fans rushing to midcourt to celebrate when it was over. Paige scored all 13 of his points in the second half, including two big baskets in the final 2 1/2 minutes, to help UNC beat No. 5 Duke 74-66 on Thursday night for their eighth straight win. Senior Leslie McDonald added a season-high 21 points for the Tar Heels (19-7, 9-4 ACC), who rallied from 11 points down in the second half to beat the Blue Devils (21-6, 10-4) in a rivalry game postponed more than a week by a winter storm. It was by far North Carolinas most impressive win during its run. Before Thursday, most had come against teams standing sixth or lower in the ACC standings. "Im not going to say were a finished product because weve got games left," Paige said, "but man, were playing really well right now and were winning games in a lot of different ways." It marked UNCs third win against a top-five team this season, along then-No. 1 Michigan State and then-No. 3 Louisville. Throw in then-No. 11 Kentucky in December, and the Tar Heels have beaten the top four teams from The Associated Press preseason Top 25. Not bad for a team that never had top player P.J. Hairston due to NCAA violations for improper benefits. "It was a bunch of guys that fought really hard," coach Roy Williams said, "and I couldnt be prouder of my team than I am right now." After filling the entire court after the horn, thousands of fans mobbed Franklin Street on the north end of campus to continue a celebration that came eight days later than they had hoped due to last weeks winter storm. The storm brought enough snow and ice to paralyze area roads and kept Dukes bus from even making it to Durham to pick up the team for the 11-mile drive to the Smith Center in Chapel Hill. The Tar Heels made it worth the wait for their fans by being tough enough to wrestle control from the Blue Devils. They shot 50 per cent from the field after halftime and even made theeir last 10 free throws after a disastrous start at the line.dddddddddddd. Jabari Parker and Quinn Cook both scored 17 points for Duke, which led 51-40 with about 15 minutes left before going ice cold from the field. The Blue Devils missed 13 straight shots and went scoreless for 6 minutes at one point, helping the Tar Heels climb back in it by mixing a 1-3-1 zone with man defence. "They would just keep switching," Cook said. "Wed come down, and we wouldnt know what theyd be in. They kept us on our toes with their defence." Duke shot 36 per cent (11 for 31) after halftime and made 5 of 22 3-pointers for the game, Coach Mike Krzyzewski said he thought his team "played young" in the second half. "We looked tired or we didnt have life," Krzyzewski said. "And no matter what we did in a timeout, we just didnt have that spark -- the anger, the emotion, the thing you have to have to match what their crowd, their team is doing. You have to try to counter that. And I just felt we were, we didnt have the life that you needed to have." Paige provided plenty of that fight for the Tar Heels. After being hounded by Duke defenders Cook and Rasheed Sulaimon through his scoreless first half, he scored nine points in the final 5 1/2 minutes starting with his only 3-pointer of the night. McDonald hit the go-ahead jumper to make it 62-60 with 3:54 left, capping his own strong performance after two straight 1-for-8 shooting performances. Paige followed with a stepback jumper over Rodney Hood with 2:11 left, then answered Parkers free throws by driving for a scooping layup through the heart of Dukes defence. After Sulaimon missed a 3 on the ensuing possession, freshman Nate Britt followed with two free throws that pushed the lead to 68-62 with 46.2 seconds left and soon had the rowdy home crowd inching closer to the court. It marked the 11th time Paige has scored in double figures in the second half this season after scoring four or fewer in the first. The postponement created a four-games-in-eight-days stretch for both teams, though its particularly challenging for Duke with No. 1 Syracuse visiting Cameron Indoor Stadium on Saturday night in a rematch of the overtime classic won by the Orange earlier this month. UNC hosts Wake Forest on Saturday afternoon. Jerseys From China Wholesale Jerseys Jerseys NFL Cheap Cheap NFL Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys Stitched Jerseys Jerseys Wholesale
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