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Published September 19, 2015
Another three-goal third led to another win for the Nashville Predators.
Eric Nystrom had a goal and two assists to lead the Predators to a 4-1 win over the Dallas Stars on Saturday night.
Shea Weber, Paul Gaustad, and Roman Josi also scored for Nashville and Pekka Rinne stopped 17 shots to help the Predators open the season with their second straight victory.
"I thought everybody played a really hard game tonight," Nashville coach Peter Laviolette. "I liked the game that we played. I liked it from start to finish."
Antoine Roussel scored for Dallas, which has lost its first two.
Gaustad and Nystrom scored 1:21 apart midway through the third period to put the Predators ahead 3-1.
Gaustad scored the tiebreaking goal at 8:33 on a wraparound from the right side. Then, with the teams skating 4-on-4, Nystrom took a cross-ice pass from Gaustad before lifting a backhand past Dallas goalie Anders Lindback from the right side.
"Goose slid it over and I thought the D was going to poke it and it was a little too far away from him." Nystrom said. "I pulled to my backhand, and I was actually thinking, 'This is going to be a bad shot,' but I got pretty good wood on it."
Josi added an empty-netter with 3 seconds remaining.
"Our top guys have struggled, and it has probably hurt us more than anything," Stars coach Lindy Ruff said. "If they're going well, we are going to win."
Lindback finished with 29 saves.
"In tight games, I need to make those saves that will keep us in it," Lindback said. "Every point matters. Unfortunately today, I didn't capitalize and we as a team didn't manage to get back. So we will look forward and keep on going."
The assist on Nystrom's goal completed a Gordie Howe hat trick for Gaustad, who got into a fight with Dallas' Vernon Fiddler in the first period.
Roussel put the Stars ahead at 7:14 of the opening period. From the left point, Trevor Daley passed to Roussel at the right faceoff dot, and Roussel skated to the bottom of the circle and sent a shot that deflected off the skate of Nashville defenseman Ryan Ellis and past Rinne.
Weber tied it with 40.8 seconds remaining in the second as he elevated a wrist shot from the right point that ended up skipping between Lindback's pads. It was his second goal in two games.
"Anytime you can score late in a period, that's killer when it happens against you and then obviously it's a momentum booster going into the locker room," Weber said. "You want to avoid giving them up but obviously take them when you can get them."
Weber prevented the Stars from opening a two-goal lead midway through the second when he stopped a shot by Tyler Seguin from the right circle while Rinne was out of position after making a save seconds before.
A seventh round draft pick of the Predators in 2007, Lindback spent two seasons in Nashville as Rinne's backup. After spending the last two years with Tampa Bay, he signed with the Stars on July 1.
NOTES: Nashville has given up the first goal in both of its games this season. ... Weber led NHL defensemen in goals last season with 23. ... The home team won all five games between the two teams in 2013-14. ... Roussel scored a career-high 14 goals last season. He was the only player in the NHL who had over 150 penalty minutes and 25 points.