Game Preview: Preds @ Blues
The Nashville Predators will face off against the Central Division leading St Louis Blues tonight at Scott Trade Center 7 CT. The Preds seem to be the one team in the NHL that has given the Blues a tough time winning 4 of 5 meetings this season including the 2 contests in St Louis.
This will be the 6th & final meeting of the regular season between the division rivals with a possibility for more action come playoff time (likely not a chance in 1st rd). The Preds look to continue their dominance over the rest of the division after beating Chicago 6-1 on Sun night. Look for a big Goalie duel tonight as Pekka Rinne (tied for league lead in wins with 41) will be in net for the Preds & Bryan Elliott should get the start for the Blues with his league leading 1.52 Goals against average, .941 save percentage, & 8 shutouts.
David Legwand leads the Preds in scoring against the Blues with 5 points in 5 games, but the dominant player tonight should be Alex Radulov if his first 3 games back are any indication of his production. The Preds look to continue getting new acquisitions fit into the lineup & some chemistry issues worked out with only 6 games left in the season.
This is a huge game & if the Preds gain 1 point, they will clinch a playoff spot for the 7th time in 8 years. If the Preds win, they can pull back into 4th in the Western Conference & to within 5 points of 1st overall in Division & Conference.
F Jordin Tootoo tweeted that he was fine yesterday, but remains listed as day to day with an upper body injury. F Martin Erat is listed as day to day with an upper body injury. F Colin Wilson is being brought back slowly from a groin strain, but he is listed as a healthy scratch.
The bottom line…
The Nashville Predators are 44-24-8 (96 Pts) with 6 games remaining and sit 3rd in The Central Division, 7 Pts behind St Louis (6 GR) & 1 Pt behind Detroit (6 GR).
-In the Western Conference the Predators are in 5th, with the chase pack: 6 Chicago (92 Pts 6 GR), 7 Dallas (87 Pts 6 GR) & 8 Phoenix (87 Pts GR 5), 9 LA (86 6 GR).
-The Predators continue a 3 game road trip tonight @ St Louis 7 CT, And Fri @ Detroit 6:30 CT.
-The Preds have picked up 2 of a possible 2 points on current 3 game road trip.
-F Alex Radulov has recorded 3 points in 3 games since returning from the KHL.
-F Patric Hornqvist leads the Preds in goals scored with 25; Mike Fisher has 24.
-F Martin Erat leads the Preds with 39 Assists & 57 points.
-F Jordin Tootoo leads the Preds in penalty minutes with 92 & D Shea Weber leads the team in hits with 167.
-G Pekka Rinne is tied for most wins in the NHL with 41 (Fleury-Pit) & has now played in 68 games (previous high 64 last season).
Leg-watch 500- With 1A Vs Chicago, David Legwand now has 497 points in his career (187 G 310 A) with the Predators.