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Friday's notes: Tinkering Time

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Now that the Nashville Predators' coaching staff got their initial test drive with Alexander Radulov out of the way, it's time to practice, perhaps refine some line combinations, and prepare for tomorrow's game with the Winnipeg Jets at Bridgestone Arena. Unlike most previous years, the team is a virtual certainty to make the postseason with several games remaining, so there is time to focus on getting the fundamentals working well, without having to worry so much about the night-to-night results.

Of course, it will help to have Paul Gaustad, back in the lineup to fill his very specialized role (not to mention Colin Wilson & Roman Josi), so let's hope for that this weekend, too. While we wait for more news on that front, dive in to your morning hockey notes...

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Nashville Predators News

Paul McCann - Loss Increases Sense of Urgency
With five losses in the last six games, Paul says it's time to step on the gas. Not that they'd do it deliberately, but finishing in 6th may actually be preferable to 4th or 5th...

Evgeni Malkin shows goals to pal Alexander Radulov | The Tennessean
Barry Trotz could only sing Malkin's praises after that one.

Postgame ponderings - Predators Insider
Adding Radulov doesn't mean the Preds can afford to slack off defensively.

New Staff Writer At The Roundtable | Admirals Roundtable
Congrats to Ryan & the gang for bringing the Blake Geoffrion of hockey writers on board.

Around the Wide Wide World of Hockey

Gary Bettman says he's ready to bargain - The Globe and Mail
I thought I linked to a report a few days ago saying the players want to wait until after the season, so Donald Fehr can have his player reps fully engaged?

You Can’t Draft Goalies And Neither Can Anybody Else | Edmonton Journal
Remember, even Peks was drafted 258th overall.

What would the playoff race look like under the NHL’s failed realignment plan? | Puck Daddy
Ah, if only...

Would the NHL embrace a language gap for advertisements? | Punk Drunk Love
I think the way to go here is with the digital ads, like you see on some teams' (the Rangers?) games, where the advertisements magically appear like they're on the glass behind each goal. Those could, conceivably, be tailored for international broadcasts.

Stars' Glen Gulutzan: Bounties don't exist in the NHL - The Dallas Morning News
Nothing to see here, says the Dallas coach.

It's the Mother-Geno Juggernaut: Pens easily roll over Predators 5-1 - PensBurgh
Just another night at the office for the Penguins, apparently.

Blues get a point off Kings, lose Beer Pong Point in SO. - St. Louis Game Time
The Blues are getting a chance to see their new collegiate signee, Jaden Schwartz.

Sharks turn in a phenomenal defensive effort, outlast Bruins 2-1 - Fear The Fin
For one night, at least, the Sharks put it together.

Flyers vs. Capitals recap: Winning shootouts is fun! - Broad Street Hockey
The Caps could have really used the two points, but Philly swiped 'em.

Game 73: Edmonton Oilers versus Tampa Bay Lightning - Raw Charge
Tampa Bay and Edmonton are playing out the string, but this one was notable for Nikolai Khabibulin's return to Tampa, where he won the 2004 Stanley Cup.