Milwaukee’s Starring Role in Preds 3-2 Opening Night Victory

Ryan Ellis, Pekka Rinne and the Predators defeated Ottawa 3-2 in last night's season opener. Photo via by John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images
Former Admirals Ryan Ellis and Pekka Rinne helped the Predators defeat Ottawa 3-2 in Nashville’s season opener. Photo via by John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images

One night before the Milwaukee takes the ice for their first game of the season against Charlotte, the Admirals NHL Affiliate Nashville opened its 2014-2015 campaign with a 3-2 home victory against Ottawa.

Several ex-Admirals made the Predators’ opening night lineup, include three, Filip Forsberg, Calle Järnkrok and Pekka Rinne, that dressed in games with Milwaukee last season. Forsberg got off to a terrific start in Nashville, picking up a pair of assists in 15:11 of ice time. The 20-year-old Swede’s first point came on a beautiful setup of Craig Smith‘s power play tally, while his second on a forced turnover contributed to Eric Nystrom‘s third period game winner.

Forsberg’s fellow Swedish countryman Jarnkrok had a much slower night, going pointless in 13:07. Meanwhile, Rinne looked like his old self on a relatively quiet night, stopping 18 of 20 shots to pick up his first win of the season.

Other former Admirals in Nashville’s opening night lineup, included Ryan Ellis, Shea Weber, Mattias Ekholm, Colin Wilson, Gabriel Bourque, Roman Josi and the earlier mentioned Madison, Wisconsin native Smith. Therefore, half of the Predators dressed skaters (10 altogether) enjoyed at least one stop in Milwaukee during their careers.

One longtime former Predator, David Legwand, suited up for the Senators in the debut contest. Nashville’s first-ever draft pick enjoyed this inglorious moment when he was called for a tripping penalty in the second period.

Jarnkrok and Forsberg’s ex-Admirals mates take to the ice tonight in Milwaukee’s 2014-2015 debut at the BMO Harris Bradley Center. You can read my season preview on

Likely future Predators call up candidates dressing tonight for the Admirals, include forwards Colton Sissons, Miikka Salomäki, Pontus Åberg and Austin Watson, plus defenseman Joe Piskula and Johan Alm, who were Nashville’s final two cuts.

So Roundtable . . . What did you think of Nashville’s first game of the season? Do you think we’ve seen the last of Calle Jarnkork and Filip Forsberg in Milwaukee? When Nashville comes calling for a forward or a defenseman, who do you think is going to be the Predators first call up?

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