The loss puts Nashville’s record at 5-5-2, and although Josi tallied what is arguably Nashville’s prettiest goal of the young season, the Preds were unable to take advantage of their offensive opportunities.
Combine that with eight power-play opportunities for San Jose and Nashville was forced to play down a man for a much larger amount of time than they’d like.
“We’re getting some chances, and I’d really like to see – if we stayed out of the box, seven or eight times, that’s 15, 16 minutes of even strength hockey,” Nashville center Ryan Johansen said. “I’d like to see what our team would be doing. We have to stay out of the box.”
“Once again, we took way too many penalties,” Josi said. “We had some momentum, we scored on the one shift and then we take two, three penalties and it just kills our momentum. We have to be way more disciplined than that.”
Joonas Donskoi gave the Sharks a 1-0 lead after 20 minutes, and after Joe Pavelski made it 2-0 in the second, Josi dangled his way to the slot where he managed to get off a lethal backhander that beat goaltender Martin Jones over the shoulder to get Nashville on the board.
But Marc-Edouard Vlasic got the two-goal lead back for the home team before the period was out and then Mikkel Boedker put it out of reach late in the third.
“Again, we had opportunities to execute in the offensive zone, but we didn’t capitalize, they did capitalize,” Predators Head Coach Peter Laviolette said. “Not a lot of opportunities or attempts for them, but they made the most of the ones that they did and we continue to shoot ourselves in the foot with penalties.”
The Predators will continue their California trip with a back-to-back set this weekend in Anaheim and Los Angeles, and there isn’t any doubt as to where Nashville’s focus will center.
“We just have to score,” Josi said. “If you have a chance, you have to bear down and score. That’s our problem right now, we’re not scoring enough. [Goaltender Pekka Rinne] has been playing great, he’s been keeping us in those games. But we have to find ways to score.”
Calle Jarnkrok assisted on Josi’s goal, the 50th helper of his career.
Anthony Bitetto, Yannick Weber and Pontus Aberg were healthy scratches against the Sharks.
Center Nick Bonino joined the Preds for the morning skate in San Jose but remains on Injured Reserve with a lower-body injury.
Nashville will be back on the ice on Friday night at 9 p.m. CT in Anaheim as they face the Ducks for the first time since last spring’s meeting in the Western Conference Final. Then it’ll be up to Los Angeles to take on the Kings on Saturday night at 9:30 p.m.
Pete Weber’s Postgame Report