The Week Ahead For The Nashville Predators

The Nashville Predators get back to business this week after a longer-than-usual All-Star break, hoping to build off their recent 18-5-0 record to challenge for the Central Division lead. While they don't return to Bridgestone Arena until a Saturday night contest with a key rival, they start the week with two road games against contending teams from each conference...

The Preds have 7 home games in February - save money on tickets with the OTF Discount!

Tuesday at Minnesota (7:00 p.m. Central on FS-TN)

After defying pre-season predictions by leading the NHL during the opening weeks of the season, the Wild fell apart in mid-December, going 4-11-4 since December 13th. Up in Minnesota, they're already contemplating who might go if the Wild turn into sellers at the Trade Deadline, rather than load up for a playoff run.

Their best chance to turn things around might to get Dany Heatley really going. While he leads the Wild in scoring, his performance so far hasn't lived up to expectations.


Dany Heatley

#15 / Left Wing / Minnesota Wild

6-4

220

Jan 21, 1981



GP G A P +/- PIM PPG SHG GWG
SOG PCT
2011 - Dany Heatley 49 15 19 34 7 14 4 0 3 141 10.6

Thursday at Philadelphia (6:00 p.m. Central on FS-TN)

A couple weeks ago, one of the Preds' more impressive wins of the month came against the Flyers in Nashville. The Erat-Fisher-Kostitsyn line led the way as the Predators took the lead and hung on for a bumpy ride down the stretch. Despite being a legit Eastern Conference contender, the Flyers boast only a 11-7-3 record on home ice, so the Predators should not be intimated at all by the challenge of gaining two points at Philly.

After missing a few games with a concussion, Claude Giroux has rocketed back up near the top of the NHL scoring ranks, second only to Pittsburgh's Evgeni Malkin:


Claude Giroux

#28 / Right Wing / Philadelphia Flyers

5-11

172

Jan 12, 1988



GP G A P +/- PIM PPG SHG GWG
SOG PCT
2011 - Claude Giroux 44 18 37 55 0 23 5 0 5 128 14.1

Saturday vs. St. Louis (7:00 p.m., no local TV)

Probably the most important battle of the week comes in Nashville on Saturday night, as the Blues come in to town. The interesting bit about the Blues' record so far is how widely their performance varies between home and the road. Even though they're among the top teams in the NHL standings, they'll bring just a 8-10-3 road record with them to Bridgestone Arena.

The big question is whether this guy will come down with the flu again, or will he take the ice against his former team?


Jason Arnott

#44 / Center / St. Louis Blues

6-5

220

Oct 11, 1974



GP G A P +/- PIM PPG SHG GWG
SOG PCT
2011 - Jason Arnott 48 12 12 24 11 22 4 0 2 107 11.2

So what are your expectations heading in to this week? I wouldn't call any of these games either especially tough or easy matchups. Minnesota has been up and down all season, the Flyers are strong but haven't played all that well at home, while the opposite is true of the Blues.

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