On Saturday night, the Nashville Predators looked to right the ship as they welcomed in the Minnesota Wild to Bridgestone Arena. The game started with the Preds taking advantage of a tip-in goal early in the first period at 1:24 by Eric Nystrom to give Nashville a 1-0 lead.
Nashville would go through the first two periods not allowing a single goal. Carter Hutton was phenomenal to get Nashville to a 1-0 lead going into the third period.
The Predators went into the third period trying to seal the deal for a home victory. At 5:02, Matt Dumba was called for a delay of game penalty to give the Preds a man-advantage. Roman Josi (10) was able to put back his own rebound to give Nashville a 2-0 lead at 6:14.
The Predators would finish the game with a Filip Forsberg empty net goal to give them a 3-0 shutout victory.
Tonight, the Preds will welcome in the Chicago Blackhawks to Bridgestone Arena. The Blackhawks have won 11 games in a row, including their 5-2 victory over the Montreal Canadiens.
Keys to Watch
Possible Record Breaking Night
Tonight could be a big night in Smashville. If the Blackhawks defeat the Preds tonight, Chicago will tie the Panthers for the league’s longest winning streak this season. The 1992-93 Pittsburgh Penguins have the longest winning streak in the history of the NHL (17). This will break a franchise record for Chicago with a win tonight for Chicago. The Predators have to put together a performance very similar to Saturday’s victory. Strong defense, outstanding goaltending, and timely scoring will allow for a Nashville win.
Pekka HAS to be Pekka
Tonight, the Nashville Predators are expected to put Pekka Rinne as the starter against the Chicago Blackhawks. Rinne has not been strong over his last few appearances in net. In 37 games played this season, Rinne has the most losses in the NHL (14), the most overtime losses (7), second most goals against (95), .902 save percentage, and 2.54 goals-against average. Needless to say, the Nashville Predators need Rinne from last year with his 41 wins, 17 losses, .923 save percentage, and 2.18 goals-against average. If the Preds have a chance to win, they NEED Pekka to be Pekka.
Slow Down Kane
Patrick Kane has been out-of-this world for this season. In 48 games this season, he already has a total of 69 points (29 goals, 40 assists). Kane leads the NHL in both goals and assists. He has been trending over the past ten days with nine points recorded. The task is tall for the defense of the Nashville Predators to stop Kane. He is on a crash course for the league MVP. The Preds need to slow him down. Limit his chances with the puck and be physical with him. If the Preds give him the opportunity to get open looks, it will be a long night.
The Nashville Predators will look to end the current winning streak of the Chicago Blackhawks in front of a raucous crowd in Nashville. The game will be covered on NBCSN or you can listen live on 102.5 The Game. Puck drops at 7:00 pm!