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Tuesday afternoon notes: Time To Go For It?

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<em>Damn the torpedoes!</em>
Damn the torpedoes!

Have the Nashville Predators worked their way into the class of the legitimate Stanley Cup contenders, to the point where the organization's thinking should be to potentially sacrifice some long-term concerns for maximizing their chances at winning it all this spring?

That's what one prominent hockey reporter considers this afternoon...

Save money on Preds tickets by taking the OTF Discount!

Nashville Predators News

Predators not in a bind with Suter + 30 Thoughts - CBC Sports
Given how things are shaping up this season, Elliotte Friedman argues that David Poile is in position to go for a Cup now, consequences be damned. Based on the situation has changed over the last few weeks, it's hard to argue with that, but the analyst in me has a hard time getting past some of the underlying metrics, which normally indicate trouble ahead.

Pekka a Rinne-stone Cowboy in Nashville - Hockey Wires -
Worst headline pun of the season? I didn't actually bother to read the article.

TheSpec - He battled the bottle and won
Another personal profile of Brian McGrattan's off-ice triumph.

Playoff rematch (again) against Vancouver - Predators Insider
Yup, it sounds like Smithson is back in tonight.

Around the Wide Wide World of Hockey

Canucks coach Vigneault says you ‘keep your fingers crossed’ with ailing Higgins - Vancouver Sun
Don't expect to see Chris Higgins take the ice tonight.

Who has the most expensive defense in the NHL? | Puck Daddy
Greg argues that spending big bucks on the blueline may not be the wisest investment, and that investing in the goalie is where teams should go (conveniently ignoring examples like Ilya Bryzgalov, Cam Ward, or other high-paid underperformers).

Stanley Cup Playoffs to Air on CNBC, NHL Network? " Puck The Media
Interesting stuff here on how the NHL/NBC partnership might be leveraged.

The building challenges for Seattle, Quebec City as NHL markets | Puck Daddy
Yes, it would be nice if these cities got their arenas together... Seattle in particular has been #1 on my NHL wish list for a long time.

Detroit Red Wings still No. 1 in NHL Power Rankings -
Adrian Dater has the Preds at #2...

Detroit Red Wings need answers in goal with Jimmy Howard injured -
The Red Wings are hoping to stay one step ahead of the Predators and Blues, but face goaltending challenges in the short term.

A Narrative Revisited: Hemsky 83 - The Copper & Blue
Have the Edmonton media put together a picture on Ales Hemsky that makes it easier for the Oilers to ship him out of town? Photo by Peter Ellis at en.wikipedia ...

Here are the 32 hockey teams asking to be a part of 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics | Puck Daddy
OK, the Israeli jersey is really cool.

Down Goes Brown: Twelve big names who could be on the move at the 2012 trade deadline
Cunning analysis from DGB: "Ryan Getzlaf, Anaheim Ducks – The Duck seem to be intent on entering a rebuilding phase, and if there’s one thing we know about successful rebuilds it’s that they always start with trading your best young player when he’s at his absolute lowest possible value."

Crickets so far this NHL trade season - The Globe and Mail
We're all on pins & needles waiting for the horse-swapping to begin.

Tribute to Owen Nolan: 10 moments that best celebrate his hockey legacy (Video) | Puck Daddy
If you spot Jeremy Gover at tonight's game, be sure to give him a pat on the back in consolation.

NHL - John Buccigross welcomes back NFL fans after the Super Bowl - ESPN
Hockey's mole inside ESPN attempts to convert a few football fans.

Minnesota Holds On to Conference Lead -
The University of Minnesota Gophers (featuring Preds prospect Zach Budish) is riding high these days, leading the WCHA.

College Hockey Inc. and the NCAA’s two-pronged tactic to stop summertime jumps to the CHL - Buzzing The Net
Another maneuver in the ongoing battle between college hockey and Canadian junior.

How dare the Boston media ask Claude Julien for Nathan Horton health updates | Puck Daddy
For the umpteenth time, the NHL's injury disclosure policy is LAME.

Systems Analyst: Listless, unfocused Oilers defense lets the Leafs play shinny - Backhand Shelf
With all those kids in Edmonton, team defense is a work in progress.

Kings Gameday: The Greatest Accomplishment Of My Life - Battle of California
RudyKelly clearly has some issues he needs to work out, but boy is this fun to watch.