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Wednesday's notes: Down to business

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It's another day of practice (10:30, at Centennial, open to the public) as the Nashville Predators gear up for Friday's opener at Columbus, and we should expect an intense effort today now that the Opening Night roster has been set, and Barry Trotz works on setting his lines for the  start of the season.

For now, follow after the jump for your hockey news, which starts off with an appraisal of the Preds' chances to win their first Central Division crown...

Nashville Predators News

Hockey Night in Nashville: Preds aim to capture first Central Division title
Is this the year?

Pred White and Blue: Fight Night: Closing Out the Preseason

Celebrating new Predator Zack Stortini... 

Battle for roster spots will continue - The Tennessean
With the number of roster spots opened due to injury, the competition should only continue in the coming weeks as Fisher & Bouillon recover.

Predators forward Mike Fisher embraces Nashville lifestyle - The Tennessean
Hand, meet glove.

Preds' Big Three eye stellar 2011-12 campaign before possibly going separate ways | Nashville City Paper
David Boclair neatly sums up the Big 3 situation heading into the season. I wonder if the fact that negotiations on the new CBA won't take place for several more months will play a role in dragging this issue out.

Around the Wide Wide World of Hockey

Donald Fehr brings order to NHLPA - The Globe and Mail
By all accounts, Donald Fehr has already achieved a lot as NHLPA head, by bringing a sense of order and open communication to the oft-troubled organization.

Ron Wilson and The Importance of Good Coach-Player Communication in the New NHL - Backhand Shelf
Well, it doesn't sound like things are going well for Cody Franson at all...

Revisiting a few projections from last year... - Arctic Ice Hockey
It's always good to take a look back before calling your shot this season.

Can Mika Zibanejad play in the NHL as an 18 year old? - Silver Seven
The answer is "probably not", but this should be fascinating to watch.

Coming Down the Pipe!: TPS Predictions: Calder Trophy
More preseason award picks...

DBD Hockey Metrics Primer and Scoring Chance Project Update - Defending Big D
A good overview of many advanced stats here, for those who need a refresher or haven't seen them before.

How do Boston Bruins’ Stanley Cup rings compare to other champs? - Puck Daddy