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Nashville Predators vs. Tampa Bay Lightning Preview: Pitter Patter

The Lightning are in town!

NHL: Nashville Predators at Anaheim Ducks Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

The Preds returned home with some serious attitude on Saturday. A Calle Jarnkrok hat trick put the Predators up over the Kings. They look to continue their winning ways tonight against the other #1 team in the League. The Predators and the Lightning have identical records (14-5-1). The Lightning will certainly be looking for revenge for their last meeting tonight.

Nashville Predators

The Predators battled against a less-than-stellar Kings team on Saturday. The power play, however, finally looked like it could properly function. Calle Jarnkrok showed us all why he was protected in the expansion draft, and Ryan Ellis and Roman Josi were dishing the puck all night long.

There’s still some concerns headed into tonight’s contest. Kevin Fiala played only two shifts in the second period against the Kings and was nowhere to be seen in the third. This was probably a message from Coach Laviolette. The young Swiss winger has been less-than-stellar this season. Expect some lineup changes tonight.

Kyle Turris has his motor running. Turris and Jarnkrok make quite a pair on the second line. Craig Smith was all over the ice on Saturday.

Now that Dan Hamhuis is back from IR, the defensive pairings are shuffled a bit. Matt Irwin or Anthony Bitetto? I’m not sure which one I’d rather see struggle against the Lightning. Come back soon, P.K. Subban.

Since Rinne got the road start against Tampa Bay, will Juuse Saros be in net tonight? The younger Finnish netminder has had some rough outings recently. Is tonight his night or will he get the nod against St. Louis on Wednesday evening?

Tampa Bay Lightning

As I mentioned above, the Lightning and the Predators have identical records.

Star netminder Andrei Vasilevskiy is out with a broken foot for around 6 weeks. Louis Domingue will be taking on the starting role and he’s backed up by Eddie Pasquale. Domingue has played in 7 contests this season with a .889 Sv%.

Young Brayden Point is this season’s star for the Lightning. He has 24 points on the season (10 goals, 14 assists) and is practically unstoppable. Nikita Kucherov has 23 points (7 goals, 16 assists) and Yanni Gourde has 20 points (8 goals, 12 assists) and an awesome name. After a bumpy start, captain Steven Stamkos is rounding into form with 17 points (6 goals, 11 assists).

Ryan McDonaugh leads Lightning defensemen in points with 12 (1 goal, 11 assists). Viktor Hedman has been limited this season because of injuries. Nashville will face him tonight...he is currently on the top defensive pairing with Dan Girardi.

Mathieu Joseph and Adam Erne are making a name for themselves this season with Tampa Bay. Keep an eye on these two. You also can’t forget about Mikhail Sergachev on the third d-pair. Finally, Anthony Cirelli picked up the overtime winner Saturday against Philadelphia.

Memories and Feelings

  • Here’s the game recap from the win on the road against the Lightning. The Predators nabbed a 4-1 win with Pekka Rinne returning from IR.
  • Remember Ryan Johansen’s gorgeous no-look pass to Roman Josi? I sure do.

Reasons to Watch

  • Hello, all college kids home on Thanksgiving break!
  • Maybe let’s not make Pekka Rinne do all the work tonight?
  • This morning on 107.5 The River, Savannah was talking about how much she loved Rinne’s mustache. It truly is a beautiful cowboy-goalie mustache. Tune in for the “Mo-vember” ‘staches.

Tonight’s Theme Song

“Good Vibrations” by Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch.

Tonight’s Drink of Choice

I’m feeling rather festive tonight in preparation for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Is it time for Craig-nog tonight? (Note: Craig-nog is NOT eggnog. Eggnog is the most disgusting invention. I don’t care what you spike it with. Bleh.)

Bolts Social Media

  • @TBLightning
  • @RawCharge (Lightning SB Nation Page and Twitter)

How to Watch

Tonight’s contest is at 7:00 Central. Catch Willy, Lindsey, Crispy, and Chris Mason on Fox Sports-TN. The radio call is on 102.5 The Game.