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Jason Arnott has two goals, assist as Predators beat Flames 6-3

The Canadian Press
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Nashville Predators center Jason Arnott, left, celebrates a goal as Calgary Flames center Daymond Langkow (22) and Dion Phaneuf, right, look on during the first period of a hockey game Thursday in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/John Russell) Author: The Hockey News

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Jason Arnott has two goals, assist as Predators beat Flames 6-3

The Canadian Press
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The Predators earned at least a point for a ninth straight game and padded their lead atop the NHL by three points over Buffalo and Detroit. Shea Weber added two power-play goals, Ryan Suter and Ramzi Abid also scored, and Chris Mason stopped 28 shots.

Jarome Iginla scored twice and Jeff Friesen added a late goal for Calgary, which wrapped up the final game of a three-game road trip with its first loss in six games.

This was the Predators' first game at home since Feb. 24, and they looked a little tired from their five-game trip in the opening minutes as the Flames outshot them 4-1.

Nashville played without Peter Forsberg for a third straight game. Steve Sullivan (back spasms), Scott Nichol (broken thumb) and defenceman Marek Zidlicky (upper body injury) also were out.

But Nashville hasn't lost to Calgary since Jan. 22, 2004, and the Predators improved their unbeaten streak in the series to nine straight and the last seven played in Nashville.

Arnott helped Nashville take a 2-0 lead within 23 seconds in the first period.

He won a faceoff to Mikka Kiprusoff's left with the puck going out to Suter, who scored from near the blue-line at 11:31 of the first. Arnott scored himself 23 seconds later after J.P. Dumont intercepted the puck, passed to Arnott, who backhanding it for a 2-0 lead.

Iginla answered in less than a minute with his own backhanded shot that beat Mason's glove hand and trickled toward the line. Nashville defenceman Vitaly Vishnevski then pushed the puck across trying to scoop it away from the line.

Abid added his goal at 9:22 of the second on a wrister from the right circle for a 3-1 lead. Iginla scored his second of the game and 33rd of the season at 16:40. That was as close as the Flames would get.

Calgary helped Nashville put away the victory with two 5-on-3s, and Weber scored on slap shots on both. His first came just outside the left circle, and the defenceman scored again at 2:33 of the third 10 seconds after Brad Stuart was called for delay of game.

Arnott padded the margin with his 300th career NHL goal with a backhander at 7:22 of the third.

Notes: The Predators improved to 30-1-5 when leading after two periods and 35-8-3 when scoring first. ... Nashville defenceman Kimmo Timonen extended a points streak to seven games with an assist on Weber's second goal. He now has nine points in this streak. Paul Kariya stretched his points streak to four games with an assist on the same goal. ... Iginla now has scored in three straight for Calgary with six points. ... Sullivan missed his seventh straight game.

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Jason Arnott has two goals, assist as Predators beat Flames 6-3