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Friday's news: New Preds chair wants to lighten the load

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With two victories coming out of the Olympic break, the Nashville Predators have gotten their dash to the playoffs off to a good start. Tonight, however, they face a big test in Detroit, which is right behind them in the Western Conference standings.

Besides checking out Chris' Game Day Preview, follow after the jump for your morning hockey news, which includes a glimpse into the priorities that new team chairman Tom Ciggaran holds for the Preds, a detailed look at new acquisition Dustin Boyd from a Calgary blogger who has tracked his development over the last few years, and an absolutely nasty hit put on former Pred Scott Nichol in last night's San Jose/Montreal game...

Predators News

New Predators chairman commits to Nashville, seeking new investors - Nashville Business Journal:
Brandon Gee lands an insightful interview with Tom Cigarran, who emphasizes the need to pare down the team's debt load. To me, that is the single-biggest factor that can be addressed trim costs around the team and help them increase the player budget while still relying on NHL revenue sharing. If that means taking most of the profits from a playoff run and paying down debt, I'd be very happy with that.

Five Hole Fanatics: This and That - Staios, Boyd and Prospects
As we get ready to possibly take our first look at Dustin Boyd in a Predators uniform tonight against Detroit, check these posts by Kent Wilson for a thorough background on what kind of player he is. Dynamite stuff from a very respected Calgary blogger.

Preds On The Glass: Game Recap and Video: Predators Beat the Kings 4-2 to Extend Streak
Buddy's recap, as usual, includes lots of audio from both sides after the game.

Preds gain two points on LA with win… | Section 303
Jeremy's looking up, and seeing opportunity in the Western Conference standings for Nashville.

The View from 111: Predators Knock Down the Kings 4-2
For Mark, it was the little things that counted last night.

See Puck City: Not Quick Enough: Preds Overthrow Kings 4-2
This put a smile on my face this morning: "Boys and girls, I believe we've got ourselves a contender."

WKRN Sports " Time is Now For Preds
Cory Curtis notes the Predators have a real opportunity to build off the buzz from the Winter Olympics with a solid playoff chase (by the way, if you haven't been paying attention, WKRN Channel 2 has taken the clear lead in local TV coverage of the Preds).

Dancing in the Reign: Nashville’s Prey; Kings fall 4-2 @ LA Kings Hockey Club Podcast
From the L.A. perspective, they're sick of having to deal with the Preds.

Preds On The Glass: POTG Visits The Hockey Zen, Video Outtakes, and Friday Notes
Buddy's morning recap covers all the bases, including an unfortunate note from Cody Franson about how he spent his Olympic break.

Predators Coach Barry Trotz, captain Jason Arnott like trades - The Tennessean
The Captain is a lot happier this year, compared to 2009 when he publicly called for some help at the Trade Deadline, and didn't get any.

Top 5 Finnish goalie prospects - Hockey's Future
Do the Preds have yet another promising goalie prospect in the pipeline? Thanks to Derek Zona from Copper & Blue for passing this along.

Around the NHL

Video: Lapierre's blatant, injurious, non-penalized hit on Nichol - Puck Daddy
Holy cow, this may be the nastiest, cheapest hit I've seen since Claude Lemieux in the 1996 Western Conference Finals.

Nike-Bauer Jr. Supreme One50 Sticks Have Unsafe Lead Content - SB Nation
Travis Hughes brings word that a particular youth hockey stick has been found to have unsafe levels of lead, and while a recall hasn't been announced yet, one is likely to be on the way.

Did Milan Lucic Quit During This Fight With Colton Orr? - KuklasKorner
Don Cherry skewers the big bad (?) Bruin for a fight last night. I'm with Don on this one, I think he nailed it.

Past East Playoff Battles After The Trade Deadline - Bird Watchers Anonymous
The Falconer takes a look at how the playoff run has played out the last four seasons in the East, to see what lessons might be learned regarding this year's chase.

"Leafs are finally on the road to recovery." | The Hockey Writers
Has Brian Burke turned things in the right direction for Toronto?

The Northwest After the Deadline - The Copper & Blue
It doesn't look like anybody in the Northwest really geared up for the playoff run. If anything, are the Avalanche courting disaster by trading away Wojtek Wolski?

Game 64 Recap: Coyotes 3, Avalanche 1 - Mile High Hockey
So who scored the goal that beat Colorado last night? Wolski, that's who...

Artyukhin Goes Coast To Coast Against The Islanders - KuklasKorner
Lastly, check out this beauty of a goal from one of Atlanta's new acquisitions, Evgeny Artyukhin: