The Nashville Predators didn’t earn many style points by barely beating the Arizona Coyotes 1-0 in OT on Monday, but they’ll take the two standings points instead.
James Neal scored the overtime game-winner for his 22nd goal of the 2014-15 season. Six of those tallies have been game-winners, continuing his interestingly mixed first campaign with Nashville.
With Anaheim’s regulation loss, the Predators take a tenuous hold of the NHL’s top standings spot, as they hold a regulation/overtime win tiebraker over the Ducks, who also have 91 points. Both teams have played 68 games and could be passed by the likes of the St. Louis Blues and Montreal Canadiens … but again, Nashville was probably just glad to regain control of its Central Division lead for the time being.
Meanwhile, the Coyotes lose but perhaps bolster a little pride in an overtime defeat. That might not feel like an accomplishment considering the tank race they’re in, but losing has to get old.
Even this league-leading Predators team can relate.