Predators 2, Blue Jackets 0


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Shea Weber had a goal and an assist, Tomas Vokoun stopped 22 shots, and the Nashville Predators beat the Columbus Blue Jackets 2-0 Friday night for their fourth straight victory.

Jason Arnott also scored in the game in which each team had a goal waved off in the opening minutes because of goalie interference. The Predators, who have the second most points in the Western Conference, are 12-3 in their past 15 games.

The Predators also haven’t lost to Columbus this season, winning the fourth of eight games against their Central Division foe. The teams meet again Saturday night in Columbus, and the Blue Jackets might get center Sergei Fedorov back. He was left home due to an elbow injury.

Nashville took advantage of the depleted Blue Jackets, who didn’t have forwards Fedorov, Rick Nash, and Jody Shelley (eye), or defensemen Adam Foote (back spasms) and Duvie Westcott (concussion). Nash, Columbus’ second-leading scorer, was placed on the injured list Thursday with a back problem.

The Blue Jackets had coach Ken Hitchcock behind the bench against Nashville for the first time and outshot the Predators 10-9 in the first period. They just couldn’t solve Vokoun, and lost their third straight.

Vokoun posted his 18th career shutout, second this season and first since returning Tuesday from a torn tendon in his left thumb.

AP-ES-01-12-07 2236EST