COLUMBUS, Ohio, Oct. 7 (UPI) --
Matt Halischuk gave Nashville a two-goal lead in the opening minute of the third period Friday and the Predators held on to down Columbus 3-2.
Ryan Suter and Craig Smith scored second-period goals for Nashville, which reached the Western Conference semifinals last year before being eliminated from the playoffs by Vancouver.
Pekka Rinne stopped 34 shots for the Predators.
Center Jeff Carter made his debut for Columbus and assisted on both goals by the Blue Jackets. Columbus sent Jakub Voracek and a first-round draft pick to Philadelphia to obtain Carter, who played six seasons with the Flyers.
The Columbus goals came from Vaclav Prospal with 5:41 left in the second period and from Rick Nash midway through the third. Steve Mason made 28 saves for the Blue Jackets.
© 2011 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.