The Nashville Predators are back in action tonight against the young and talented Carolina Hurricanes. This is the second of two meetings between the clubs. The Predators dropped a shootout loss to the Canes in November.
The Predators are coming off a loss to the Winnipeg Jets on Tuesday. A high-scoring game just didn’t go the right way for the Predators, although goals by Calle Jarnkrok, Kevin Fiala, and PK Subban kept the Predators in the game. They will look to nab some points tonight against the Hurricanes.
Tonight’s game is the second of two at home this week. They will hit the road for a game against Minnesota on Saturday evening.
The Carolina Hurricanes
In a “NHL 100” game against the Toronto Maple Leaves on Tuesday afternoon, the Hurricanes were embarrassed in an 8-1 loss. They had previously won contests against Buffalo, Columbus, and Vegas. They’re probably looking for a bounce-back game, just like the Predators.
In November, we saw how dangerous the young Teuvo Teravainen and Sebastian Aho are. Teravainen leads his team in points with 8 goals and 17 assists.
Josh Jooris, Justin Williams, and Victor Rask scored for the Canes against the Predators last month. This young team has incredible talent and their place in the league standings should not be discounted. The Predators countered their effort and pushed the game to overtime and a shootout. The shootout goals by Aho and Teravainen were simply nasty…no goaltender would have had a chance at stopping them.
Scott Darling is not exactly inspiring his team with his .896 SVC. Perhaps his numbers with Carolina are a trick of a small sample size because Darling has never been the starter for a NHL club. Cam Ward is doing a little better in fewer starts.
The Hurricanes are 14-12-7 on the season and sit in last place in the stacked Metropolitan Division.
The Nashville Predators
The Predators had an “ok” game back home in Bridgestone on Tuesday, but it seemed like they had no answer for the high-scoring Jets.
Pekka Rinne did not seem like his usual Pekka Rinne self. He can’t be insanely spectacular every game, and maybe he wasn’t feeling too comfortable in net on Tuesday. Aside from a Patrik Laine snipe that Rinne didn’t see, there were a few huge saves by the Finnish netminder…but there were also a few big misses. Hopefully Rinne’s bad night was just that.
Filip Forsberg continues to be a threat. Reunited with Ryan Johansen and Viktor Arvidsson, Forsberg was a threat all over the ice and he remains the only player with points in each of the Preds’ home games.
It was nice to see Yannick Weber add a goal, but don’t expect him to be a scoring threat each night.
As mentioned often by nearly every Predators fan, we are nearing the return of Ryan Ellis. He practiced Wednesday morning in a normal practice jersey, a change from his white no-contact jersey. (JOY TO THE WORLD!)
It’s very simple: Nashville does not need to assume that tonight’s game will give them two easy points. However, they clearly have the tools to succeed against any team and they should continue their push from the Canadian road trip to defeat the young Hurricanes.
Memories and Feelings
-The contest against Carolina in November marked the “re-emergence” of Juuse Saros. The flip-flopping between Nashville and Milwaukee has done wonders for the kid. If he starts tonight, expect a confident Saros to own the crease.
-Viktor Arvidsson’s goal in Carolina was absolutely nasty. Thank you sir, may we have another?
Reasons to Watch
-More pre-holiday hockey!
-Can the Predators even the score against the Hurricanes in their second meeting of the season?
Tonight’s Theme Song
“Wizards in Winter” by Trans-Siberian Orchestra
How to Watch
As usual, tonight’s game can be viewed on Fox Sports-TN. 102.5 The Game has the radio call, and puck drop is at 7 pm.