The Nashville Predators, with a stellar 10-1-1 record at home, were able to defeat the St. Louis Blues 4-3 on Thursday night to improve to 11-1-1. With Vladimir Tarasenko being as good as advertised, scoring two goals, the Preds were able to overpower the return of Martin Brodeur. Tonight, Nashville takes on another rival within the Central Division, as they take on the ever-dangerous Chicago Blackhawks and the rowdy crowd they bring into Bridgestone Arena.
The Chicago Blackhawks (17-8-1) will be playing on back-to-back nights, with matches against Montreal on Friday and in Nashville on Saturday. On Friday night, Chicago was able to slip by Montreal with a 4-3 win. Brandon Saad scored with 27 seconds remaining in regulation to pullout the win for the Blackhawks
With 12 goals and 14 assists, the Chicago Blackhawks are being led in points by Patrick Kane. With 82 shots on net for the season, the Buffalo, NY native will shot the puck at any opportunity where one is provided.
Keys to watch
Two important components to the success of the Chicago Blackhawks has been the goaltending of Corey Crawford and the skill of Patrick Sharp. As of 12/3, Crawford is out due to a sustained off-ice lower body injury, and is expected to miss 2-3 weeks. As of 12/4, Sharp sustained a lower body injury on November 4th, and is expected to miss 3-4 weeks. He is likely to return to the lineup next week. With these two being out, look for the Predators to try to exploit the Blackhawks missing these two outstanding players.
Mike Fisher-Back in the Groove
After coming off of IR, Preds fans were assuming that it might take some time for Mike Fisher to get back in the swing of things and producing. Boy, were we wrong. In his four games, he already notched his 1st point, an assist in the St. Louis game on Thursday, extended time on ice, and solid in the face-off circle. His two-way style of play is allowing for him to contribute in multiple facets of the game.
Staying on top
The goal of every team should be to win their division every year. When a team makes it to the top of their division, it’s hard to stay on top. With 36 points, the Nashville Predators are on top of the division. (Chicago, 35, STL, 34) There are team nipping on the heels of the Predators. If Nashville wants to stay in 1st place, wins against division rivals are a must to stay on top of the mountain.
Tonight’s matchup will end a tough week of grinding games for the Preds. Get out to the arena to KEEP THE RED OUT! If you can’t make it out to Bridgestone Arena by watching it on FS-TN or listen live on 102.5 The Game.
**This game has a special puck drop of 6:00 pm.