There's so much going on in the world of the Nashville Predators that it's easy to overlook some important stories, both good and bad. Today, we've got recaps of yesterday's event at A-Game Sportsplex, where the team donated $150,000 to support hockey programs there, and CEO Jeff Cogen spoke about the need to bring more ice rinks to Middle Tennessee. There's also some growing recognition from around the hockey world for the Preds' 5-0-3 start, driven in large part by their stellar goaltending.
Buried underneath all that positive press, however, is a growing concern about Matthew Lombardi's concussion. With his status now called "week to week", it looks like the plan for Colin Wilson (to let him develop on the wing this season) is out the window, and he'll be relied upon to help drive the attack along with Cal O'Reilly, while David Legwand will continue taking on the toughest of the tough and trying to lock them down.
It's a formula that's worked so far, right? Follow after the jump for the rest of today's hockey news...
Mississippi River Scum St. Louis Blues come to town Thursday to take on the Preds, a game which will not be on TV, even if you have NHL Center Ice. Use this special offer for OtF readers to save money on Nashville Predators tickets for this, or any other home game.
While you're reading today's hockey notes, listen in to Nashville Predators CEO Jeff Cogen's segment on the Thom Abraham Show from yesterday:
Nashville Predators News
Preds On The Glass: Predators' Success Reaches Beyond The On Ice Action
While I'd quibble a bit with some of Buddy's language (saying there have been "only 4408 tickets unsold" so far belies the number of tickets given away, which is surely significant), there's no doubt that the Preds are making a serious push on the business front, and the benefits are already starting to show.
Preds On The Glass: Big Day for Fans at A-Game Sports and Wednesday Wrap-Up
Buddy's morning links include a pointer to a meetup for a group of female hockey fans that's just getting started, "the Hockey-Tonk Angels".
Tuesday’s Predators Notes - Nashville Predators Examiner
Jim Diamond has the good news (J.P. Dumont's new baby girl) and the bad (injury updates).
Suter, Goc out at least another week - Predators Insider
Marcel Goc and Ryan Suter are out through the weekend, and Matthew Lombardi is now "week to week" recovering from his concussion. I guess he makes a better Jason Arnott replacement than I thought, unfortunately. Seriously, the NHL has come a long way when it comes to dealing with head injuries, so all we can do is wait and hope for the best.
The View from 111: Predators Invest In Local Hockey Programs
I like the sound of this: When asked how many more rinks the Nashville area needed to satisfy current demand, [Preds CEO Jeff] Cogen did not hesitate. "Six. Right now."
A-Game Sportsplex receives big grant from the Predators - Nashville Predators Examiner
Besides recapping the events at A-Game yesterday, Jim Diamond has a slideshow of images to share.
Pickard Re-Assigned To Cincy | Admirals Roundtable
Chet Pickard, who hasn't won in his last 13 starts, has been sent down to Cincinnati in the hopes that he can regain some confidence there. Mark Dekanich made a similar trip last season, and it seemed to work for him.
Hockey Night in Nashville: Unlikely Key to Preds Success
Has Cal O'Reilly made it? That's what Robby wonders.
Preds' balance best in the conference - Predators Insider
Bryan Mullen points out that the Preds have the most goal-scorers (13) in the Western Conference. That depth has certainly helped them chug along despite all the injuries.
The Morning Skate: Nashville Dreams, Nightmare Head Checks - NYTimes.com
Even out there in New York City, they're sitting up and taking notice of the Preds' strong start. Thanks to TitanPredBearFan for the pointer.
Superlative Goaltending Setting Tone in Nashville - Versus
Mike Heika gives credit to Nashville's Nordic goalies, but misspells Anders the Giant's name on multiple occasions.
Predators wing it when it comes to overcoming injuries at center - Nashville City Paper
Colin Wilson has been able to fill a major void left by the Goc & Lombardi injuries.
Boclair: Goalie's success should prompt Predators to use direct route more often - Nashville City Paper
Is Anders Lindback's start a reason for the Preds to reconsider their "road through Milwaukee" philosophy? I don't think so, but David Boclair raises the question.
Cody Franson made an appearance on NHL Live yesterday, so thanks to OtF reader Kim for passing along the link. Cody's segment starts around the 1:04:40 mark if you want to skip ahead, or you can just let this video run in the background and listen to the whole 2-hour show.
Around the NHL
Bruins "Interested" In Keith Yandle; Along with Half of the League - Five For Howling
Would Phoenix Coyotes GM Don Maloney really dangle his Yandle? Not if he has any sense of decency.
Joe Thornton and His Minus-9 Rating -- NHL FanHouse
Yikes, Jumbo Joe is tied for the league's worst +/- rating (along with Buffalo's Tyler Myers). Adam Gretz breaks down the reasons why Big Bird isn't flying these days.
Ponda Center Food Review: The Hot Dog Stop and Simply Chicken - Anaheim Calling
This is what we need more of! Arthur & Brett let us know about two of the culinary options at an Anaheim Ducks game... Does anyone want to do something similar for some of the food spots in Bridgestone Arena? Try your hand at a FanPost!
Video- How Craig Anderson Injured His Knee - KuklasKorner
If their starting goaltender has to miss a significant amount of time, the Avalanche are going to be in big trouble.
The Dark Blue Jacket: Perhaps the strangest marketing effort ever
Would you buy a new third jersey before having even seen what it will look like? Columbus seems to be in an odd position to be asking fans to take a leap of faith.
What the aftermath of a skate to the neck looks like - Puck Daddy
I'll you one thing, it ain't pretty.
NHL enters talks for new TV deals flying high - Associated Press
A basic survey of the landscape as the NHL prepares to negotiate a new national TV contract. It will be interesting to see how much revenue this can drive across all 30 teams.
Be sure to "Like" our site on Facebook (now at www.facebook.com/OnTheForecheck)! To keep up with all of our coverage of the Nashville Predators, you can follow us on Twitter (@Forechecker, @predatweeter, @SLakePreds & @Short_Shifts), and if you have any questions, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.