This all feels familiar, doesn't it? It was just four days ago that the Nashville Predators were flying out of Manitoba with a pair of points after a mostly solid win against the Winnipeg Jets. This time, the rematch comes in the friendly confines of Bridgestone Arena, where success has been had so far this season.
The big news coming out of Nashville (Milwaukee?) broke just last night. Magnus Hellberg has been recalled from the Predators AHL affiliate. At press time, there has been no word of any issues with Pekka Rinne or Carter Hutton, nor is it clear if Hellberg is even going to be in the lineup tonight. We'll have all the updates for you as the day progresses, and be sure to stop by Arctic Ice Hockey for all things Jets.
|Winnipeg Jets||Nashville Predators|
|5-on-5 Close SF/60||28.5||17th||29.0||23rd|
|5-on-5 Close SA/60||35.5||26th||29.6||15th|
|5-on-5 Close Save %||.904||22nd||.922||14th|
|# of PP's/Gm||3.80||11th||3.30||26th|
|# of PK's/Gm||4.60||28th||3.50||14th|
The Jets are coming off yet another home loss to the Washington Capitals on Tuesday night. This one stung a bit, as they tied the game on three separate occasions, and mostly outplayed the Caps, but eventually lost 5-4 in the sixth round of the shootout. Our good friend Martin Erat scored the game winner.
Bryan Little potted two goals last game, one of which was the team's first shorthanded goal of the year. Little shares the team scoring lead with Evander Kane, who peppered Carter Hutton for a whopping 10 shots on goal on Sunday. Kane paces the team in that regard (54), but is also the most penalized player on the team.
With the Jets starting a four game road trip, which includes a back-to-back in Dallas and Colorado, one would expect Ondrej Pavelec to once again get the start. He's been their workhorse for the past several seasons, no reason for that to change now. If he does start, it will be his fifth in a row.
It seems like this team has been in a tizzy the past week. Let's recap: Filip Forsberg gets benched, Rich Clune isn't back for 10 seconds before he tries to rearrange Zenon Konopka's face, Carrie Underfish accidentally informs the press about her husband's "foot thing", and now the team has three goalies. Dogs and cats living together! Mass hysteria!
Here's a fun fact after you are done freaking out. Even though the Predators and Atlantipeg Thrashjets have only played each other 17 times, Nashville holds the series win at 10-4-1-2. The only teams they have a better winning percentage against are the Carolina Hurricanes, the Columbus Blue Jackets, and the New York Islanders.
To ease speculation, Josh Cooper reports Forsberg will, in fact, be in the line up tonight.
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p>Trotz said Forsberg will be in tomorrow and Fisher is skating</p>— JoshuaCooper (@JoshuaCooper) <a href="https://twitter.com/JoshuaCooper/statuses/393076222449950720">October 23, 2013</a></blockquote>
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With their loss against the Capitals coupled with a chance to get revenge against Nashville, expect the Jets to come out swinging tonight. Especially after head coach Claude Noel ripped into them following the 3-1 loss to the Preds. If you're only as good as your last game, Winnipeg has the upper hand. However, Nashville is 3-1-1 at home this season, and winning games in the building on Broadway has been a high point for this team in recent seasons. Puck drop is at 7:00 p.m. CST, but you'll have a hard time finding it as it looks like FS-TN isn't broadcasting the game.