COLUMBUS, Ohio – Pekka Rinne turned aside 38 shots — including 18 in the third period — for his fourth shutout, and Martin Erat had a goal and an assist in a two-minute burst in the second period to lift the Nashville Predators past the Columbus Blue Jackets 3-0 on Thursday night.
Mike Fisher, on the power play, and Shea Weber, with a long short-handed shot into an empty net, also scored for Nashville, which won for the ninth time in 11 games.
Columbus fell to 2-3 under interim coach Todd Richards and was the last team to be shutout this season. Steve Mason made 22 saves.
The Blue Jackets had their chances in the final period, but couldn't beat Rinne, who has won his last six starts and 15 of 17.
Rinne, who has 24 career shutouts, stopped a hard slap shot by Rick Nash early in the period and later gobbled up a semi-breakaway shot from Fedor Tyutin.
Derick Brassard couldn't convert into an open net on a tough spin around shot and Vinny Prospal hit the side of the post from close range late.
Steve Mason, now a backup to Curtis Sanford, made 22 saves for the Blue Jackets.
Midway through a scoreless, sleepy game, Tyutin gave the Predators all the scoring they would need, essentially gift-wrapping Erat's goal.
The puck came to Tyutin after teammate Samuel Pahlsson won a faceoff at the Nashville blue line. Tyutin sent an off target pass to his defensive partner, instead springing Nashville on a two-on-none with Sergei Kostitsyn forcing Mason to commit before flicking a pass to Erat for the easy score, his 11th, at 11:08.
Then with Derek Dorsett in the box for goaltender interference, Fisher, at the left post, tapped in a cross-zone feed from Erat for his ninth.
NOTES: During the first intermission, Blue Jackets general manager Scott Howson announced D Radek Martinek, 35, signed as a free-agent in the summer, will miss the remainder of the season with post-concussion symptoms and that the team signed former Red Wings and Toronto D Brett Lebda, 30, to a one-year contract. ...Nashville claimed RW Brandon Yip off waivers from Colorado on Thursday. ...Columbus is 2-3 since interim coach Todd Richards replaced Scott Arniel on Jan. 9. ...Predators top-pair D Ryan Suter missed his second-straight game with an upper-body injury. ...Nashville is 8-2-2 against the Central Division this season, including a 4-0-1 mark against Columbus.