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Kostitsyn back on Trotz’s good side after embarrassing incident

Mar 26, 2013, 10:45 AM EDT

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A little over a week ago, Sergei Kostitsyn was in the doghouse after a mental lapse resulted in a shorthanded goal and cost the Predators two key points against the Edmonton Oilers.

If you missed the incident, you can see it below:

Nashville Predators coach Barry Trotz was at a loss for what happened.

“I can’t give you a logical explanation for an illogical event,” he said and was passionate about his decision to make Kostitsyn a healthy scratch in the Predators’ following game.

But if you thought that might led to a bigger riff between Kostitsyn and his coach, that hasn’t happened. Instead, Kostitsyn has bounced back and Trotz was back to singing his praises following Nashville’s rematch against the Oilers.

“Sergei is almost the smartest guy defensively we have, if not the smartest,” Trotz told the Tennessean after Kostitsyn led the Predators’ to victory with a goal and an assist in Monday’s 3-2 win over Edmonton.

“He has good awareness around him, he has a great stick, he holds ice and doesn’t drift and get sucked to the puck when he doesn’t need to. I have a lot of faith in him defensively, and killing penalties he’s the same way.”

Kostitsyn now has 13 points and a team-leading plus-nine rating in 31 games this season. Nashville and the San Jose Sharks are tied for eighth place in the Western Conference, but the Predators have played in two extra games.

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