Nashville plays host to the defending champs tonight as they take on the L.A. Kings. This is the first meeting of the season between the two teams, and it should be a good one. Both teams have had strong starts to the season, and they look to continue it tonight.
The Los Angeles Kings
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The Kings have been playing well as of late. They dropped a close one to Dallas the other night, but I wouldn't read too much into that loss. Now I will say this much, the Kings are a completely different team at home than they are on the road. They have just won one game on the road so far. That is abysmal for the defending champs. I don't expect that to continue as the season progresses.
Tyler Toffoli, Jeff Carter, and Tanner Pearson have been leading the way this year for Los Angeles. With all the injuries to Anze Kopitar and Marian Gaborik, the Kings needed this line to step up, and they did in a big way. They have a combined 47 points and are a +38 on the season. When they are on the ice, things are getting done, and goals are being scored.
If this line continues to play the way they have been, it could be a long night for the Predators. Nashville has to find a way to contain them, or else this game could get out of hand really fast.
The Nashville Predators
The Preds continue to be one of the most consistent teams in the NHL this year. They are keeping pace with the big boys of the league, and are showing no signs of slowing down. Nashville has yet to lose back to back games this season. They are bringing it every night, and I wouldn't expect anything less from them tonight.
The Predators are starting to get some love from the media outlets around the nation. Filip Forsberg has
emerged as the top Calder candidate, and Pekka Rinne is cementing his name in the Vezina race. And I don't even have to mention that Shea Weber is, yet again, in the Norris discussions. These guys have played great so far, and I expect them to continue that throughout the season.
Rinne is going to have to have a big tonight against the Kings. If he makes some key saves early, it might just get in the heads of the Kings. I'm expecting a fast paced game tonight, and Rinne will be the key to the Preds' success for the game.
Reasons To Watch
Well, for one, it's the defending Stanley Cup champs. But other than that, you can expect a skilled and physical hockey game tonight. What hockey fan wouldn't want to watch that?
Drink Of Choice For Game Time
I'm going with a glass of Oban (a fine scotch). Because that is what you bust out when you host royalty.
Sights And Sounds
You can watch the game on FS-TN locally or listen to it live on 102.5 The Game. Pucks drops at 7:00 pm CST. Don't be late!