Nashville Predators vs Phoenix Coyotes Preview: Appreciate Tonight

The Stats

Phoenix Coyotes Nashville Predators
Record 36-28-15 18th 35-32-12 20th
GF/Game 2.61 19th 2.51 21st
GA/Game 2.76 19th 2.85 22nd
5-on-5 Close SF/60 30.1 9th 29.5 15th
5-on-5 Close SA/60 30.6 23rd 26.8 4th
Fenwick Close 49.70 17th 50.80 14th
5-on-5 Close Save % .930 6th .909 28th
5-on-4 GF/60 7.4 4th 5.9 17th
# of PP's/Gm 3.47 5th 2.91 29th
4-on-5 GA/60 7.2 28th 7.0 26th
# of PK's/Gm 3.35 19th 2.91 4th

Phoenix Coyotes

The Yotes are in a down-to-the-wire chase for the final Western Conference playoff spot, and with a victory tonight they would pull alongside Dallas with two games left to play. While the Stars have played decently of late the Coyotes have struggled, coming into tonight's contest with a 5-game losing streak.

Hardly the way to make a charge to the postseason, eh?

It doesn't help that they're fairly dinged up presently, with both goaltender Mike Smith and giant center Martin Hanzal doubtful for this game.

Nashville Predators

Yes, the mood in Smashville is dour these days, thanks to the finality of Tuesday's elimination from playoff contention and the talk of major change either behind the bench or in the front office.

Tonight is Fan Appreciation Night, however, an opportunity to celebrate the fun part of hockey fandom, and also recognize that despite the disappointing results we've seen this season, the guys on the ice have given their best, I don't think anybody would disagree with that. So enjoy the extra giveaways tonight and savor the atmosphere, as we won't have it again until the curtain rises on the 2014-15 NHL season. We all know what's coming on Saturday, so why not treat tonight like the home finale instead?

And as noted at the Tennessean this morning, with a victory tonight Pekka Rinne can claim the franchise's all-time win record for himself, so that's something worth pulling for.

Note: Congratulations go out to Matthew Meadows, who won the #OTFTickets contest and receives 4 seats to tonight's game.