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Atlanta Thrashers @ Nashville Predators Preview: Home Ice in Sight

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7-2-1. 22-9-8. That's the Nashville Predators' record in their past ten games, and then their home record over the course of the year, which makes them one of just three teams to have lost fewer than ten games on home ice so far. 

These numbers tell us two things - the first one, that Nashville has played well enough down the stretch to make home ice advantage in the playoffs a very real possibility, and second, that if they get there, winning a series becomes that much likelier. 

This, of course, makes the final three games of the year all the more important. The Preds first need to clinch (which they can do via a win and a Stars' loss), but winning out gives Nashville an even 50% chance of finishing fourth. With the home record the Predators have posted this year, that'd surely be a shot in the arm. 

And so, this quest begins tonight against the Atlanta Thrashers, who have already been eliminated from postseason contention and would more than likely love to play the role of spoiler. If the Preds continue to let their guard down, they'll find themselves not only slipping down the ladder, but failing to clinch a spot altogether.

Projected lineups: 

Nashville:


Pekka Rinne

#35 / Goalie / Nashville Predators

6-5

207

Nov 03, 1982


GP MIN W L EGA GA GAA SA SV SV% SO
2010 - Pekka Rinne 61 3610 31 21 92 2.13 1799 1671 .929 6

Forwards
Kostitsyn - Fisher - Hornqvist
Ward - Legwand - Erat 
Tootoo - Smithson - Spaling
Halischuk - Geoffrion - Wilson
Defense
Weber - Suter 
Blum - Klein
Franson - O'Brien

Atlanta: 


Chris Mason

#50 / Goalie / Atlanta Thrashers

6-0

195

Apr 20, 1976


GP MIN W L EGA GA GAA SA SV SV% SO
2010 - Chris Mason 31 1601 13 11 87 3.26 850 763 .898 1
Forwards
Ladd - Little - Wheeler
Kane - Schremp - Antropov 
Thorburn - Burmistrov - Boulton
Maxwell - Stapleton - Stewart
Defense
Enstrom - Bogosian
Hainsey - Byfuglien
Oduya - Stuart