On Sunday night, the Nashville Predators looked to become the team with the most points in the NHL, as they had a 2-0 lead at the end of the second period. Taylor Beck started the scoring at 1:09 of the second with a great give-and-go from Gabriel Bourque. The Preds went up 2-0 with a PPG from Roman Josi at 6:49 from an outstanding slap-shot.

….And then the third period.

The Predators could not stop the Anaheim offense during the third period as they scored four goals for a final of 4-2.

Nashville will look to rebound against a surging Minnesota Wild team at Bridgestone Arena.

In their last outing, the Minnesota Wild (38-24-7) faced off against the St. Louis Blues. The potent Blues offense was no match for the superior play of Devan Dubnyk as the Wild were able to win 3-1. Dubnyk was able to stop 41 of 42 shots with a SV % of .976.

Thomas Vanek (17), Nino Niederreiter (22), Kyle Brodziak (9) contributed with scores for the Wild. St. Louis’, David Backes (23), scored the lone goal for the losing side.

Zach Parise leads all scorers for the Minnesota Wild. In 62 games played, Parise has 27 goals, 26 assists for a total of 53 points. The Minneapolis, MN native is also one of the best in the league with a +15 rating.

Morning skate videos:

Shea Weber:

Ryan Ellis:

Viktor Stalberg:

Nashville Predators head coach Peter Laviolette:

Minnesota Wild head coach Mike Yeo:


Keys to Watch

Dubnyk… Wow.

In the small time Devan Dubnyk spent with the Nashville Predators, he played in 2 games, with a record of 0-1-1. Statistically, he allowed 9 goals, .850 SV %, and 4.35 GAA. Since being traded to the Wild, from Arizona, Dubnyk has been remarkable. He is 20-5-1, with a SV % of .939, and 1.66 GAA. Arguably, he has been one, if not the best, goalies in the NHL the last 27 games. The Predators will have fits trying to score on Dubnyk, and if their offensive woes over the past 10 games continue, it will be a long night.

 

Thomas Vanek has been on fire!

One player that Nashville will have to contend with in tonight’s match-up will be Thomas Vanek. He has been one of Minnesota’s best players over the last 10 games. In this stretch, Vanek has 4 goals, 1 assists, and 9 shots. Of course, Parise is always a threat, but you have to look at the hot hand, and Vanek has the scoring touch as of late. On the season, Vanek has 44 points (17 goals, 27 assists). This ranks him 3rd on the team, behind Parise and Jason Pominville.

 

Special Teams

When these two teams meet, special teams always becomes an important part of the game’s dynamic. On the PP, both teams are towards the bottom with the man-advantage. Minnesota is ranked 28th on the PP with a 14.9 conversion rate. Nashville is not far ahead with a conversion rate of 16.9, 25th in the NHL. The advantage comes on the PK for Minnesota. The Wild are ranked #1 in the NHL with a PK of 86.7. Nashville is towards the bottom on the PK as well with a rate of 80.5, 21st in the NHL. Once again, the Preds will struggle on the PP if it is not completely in-sync.


The Nashville Predators will make it back to Bridgestone Arena tonight for the 1st of a 3-game home stand. The Predators have got to get back on track. With 11 games remaining, this home stretch plays a crucial part in the upcoming success or failure leading into the playoffs. Tonight, if you can not make it out to the arena, FOX Sports Tennessee will have all of your viewing coverage and 102.5 The Game will carry the game live! Puck drops at 7:00pm CST.