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Pekka Rinne notches first KHL shutout

Nov 4, 2012, 6:45 PM EDT

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Pekka Rinne got off to a bumpy start with Dinamo Minsk,* but Nashville Predators fans should be happy to hear that he notched his first KHL shutout on Sunday.

Rinne stopped all 27 of Dinamo Riga’s shots in that 2-0 win, earning himself a belated birthday present after turning 30 on Saturday.

If recent meetings actually result in CBA progress, the Predators must hope that Rinne is indeed rounding back into elite form because he’ll face plenty of pressure whenever NHL action resumes.

Rinne faces added attention thanks to a $7 million annual cap hit that tops all goalies – and must justify that big money without Ryan Suter patrolling Nashville’s blueline.

That shutout improves Rinne’s KHL record to 7-6 and save percentage to .912 according to the league’s Web site, so it seems like he’s moving in the right direction.

* – Captured most simply in this blooper video via Puck Daddy.

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