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Predators Fall to Lightning 5-3 in Season Opener

The Nashville Predators began the regular season with a 5-3 loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning.

The Predators were off to a rough start in the 1st period. Nikita Kucherov scored the 1st NHL goal of the season in the first to make it 1-0 Tampa Bay. 

Nashville answered back with a goal in the second period from Ryan O’Reilly to even the score at 1. The goal is his 1st goal as a Predator since signing a 4-year contract in July. 

Eleven seconds into the third period, Jusso Parsinen put the Predators up 2-1. Roman Josi could’ve made it 3-1 for Nashville but a goal was waved off for goaltender interference. 

However, Nick Paul tied the game up at 2 on a powerplay goal for Tampa Bay. Afterward, the Lightning were awarded a penalty shot because Nashville's Luke Schenn held Tampa Bay's Brandon Hagel on a breakaway. Hagel would give the Lightning the lead back making it a 3-2 game in the 3rd period. 

Tommy Novak would tie things back up at 3 apiece on a powerplay goal at 8:48 in the 3rd period. 

The Lightning were back on a powerplay thanks to a high-sticking penalty on Jeremy Lazuon. Nick Paul would take advantage by getting his second powerplay goal of the game to give the Lightning the lead back. 

Nikita Kucherov would put the game away, scoring his second goal of the game on an empty-netter that made it 5-3. The Lightning would walk away with the win in front of the home crowd.

Jonas Johansson made 28 saves in the game on 31 shots for the Lightning. Jusso Saros made 29 saves on 33 shots faced for the Predators. 

The Predators return home Thursday for their home opener against the Seattle Kraken. The puck drops at 7:00 P.M. on Bally Sports South. 

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