Eeli Tolvanen’s OT winner leads Nashville Predators over Dallas Stars

By Field Level Media
Mar 30, 2021; Nashville, Tennessee, USA; Dallas Stars left wing Jason Robertson (21) scores against Nashville Predators defenseman Roman Josi (59) during the second period at Bridgestone Arena. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Rookie Eeli Tolvanen scored the overtime winner and added an assist to lead the host Nashville Predators a 3-2 overtime victory over the Dallas Stars on Tuesday night.

Roman Josi and Calle Jarnkrok also scored for Nashville, which is riding a six-game winning streak. Goaltender Juuse Saros stopped 33 shots to give the Predators their eighth win in nine games and move them into fourth place in the Central Division.

Jason Robertson and Roope Hintz replied for the Stars, and goalie Anton Khudobin made 23 saves. Miro Heiskanen collected two assists for Dallas, which has just one win in its past six games and sits seven points out of a playoff position.

Read More: NHL trade rumors: Updates on latest buzz, speculation before 2021 deadline

Tolvanen, sensing an opportunity, sped away on a rush with Viktor Arvidsson, received a pass for an open chance and lifted a backhander into the top corner for the winner 89 seconds into the extra period. Tolvanen, the 2017 first-round draft pick, is riding a six-game point streak during which he’s scored three goals – two of them game winners – and added six assists.

The Predators, who sport a 6-1 record in extra-time games this season, are on their longest winning streak in more than three years.

Dallas, which reached the Stanley Cup Final last season, has a miserable 2-10 record in overtime/shootout affairs.

After a scoreless first period, Robertson put the Stars on the board with his third goal in four games. The rookie forward took a drop pass from Denis Gurianov and from the left face-off dot fired a wrist shot that went in at the 6:12 mark for his seventh goal of the season.

Josi replied with a power-play goal less than three minutes later. The Nashville captain unloaded a slap shot from his position on the right point that Khudobin managed to only get a piece of before it went into the top corner.

Hintz restored the Dallas lead with a man-advantage marker of his own two minutes later. Saros stopped Heiskanen’s point shot but the rebound bounced right to Hintz at the bottom of the left circle and he made no mistake to net his seventh goal in his past 10 games. Hintz’s goal is also his team’s 10th power-play goal in five clashes this season with the Predators.

Read More: NHL power rankings: Piping-hot Lightning back to No. 1, Avalanche closing in

However, the Predators again drew even with Jarnkrok’s tally four minutes into the third period. Jarnkrok was parked at the doorstep when Luke Kunin’s long shot missed the net but bounced right to him, and Jarnkrok tucked the puck home for his second goal in as many outings.

–Field Level Media