Keys to Watch
Johansen Returns to Columbus
Tonight, the Nashville Predators will make it to the state of Ohio to take on the Columbus Blue Jackets. This is the second and final meeting between the two clubs this season. During the first meeting, the Preds defeated the Jackets 4-3 in Nashville on January 26th. Ryan Johansen will make his first trip back to Columbus tonight as a member of the Nashville Predators. Johansen leads the Predators in scoring with nine goals and 31 assists. He was the fourth overall selection of Columbus in 2010. Emotions will be high and it will be interesting to see how Joey responds to his reception, whether positive or negative.
Stopping the Blue Jackets Power-Play
The Nashville Predators will have a tough test in stopping the Columbus power-play. The Blue Jackets are currently third in the NHL with a man-advantage having a conversion rate of 22.4%. Columbus has the ability to press with their defensive corps, and these puck-moving defenseman can score from the point at any point. The Predators will have to play a clean game, not allowing any penalties, and if so, they have to play conservatively to not give Columbus easy scores.
Struggling Away from Music City
The Predators will be facing a tough home team today in the state of Ohio. Sunday’s game is the Columbus’ sixth of seven straight at Nationwide Arena. Overall, the Jackets are 21-8-1 at home this season. Nashville is 11-15-6 away from Bridgestone Arena. It seems as though they dig themselves into too big of a hole on the road and have to dig themselves out. Tonight, the Predators have to start out strong, don’t get behind, and keep their foot on the gas pedal.
The Predators will look to get back to their winning ways after the letdown of last night in Minnesota. Be sure to catch all of the action on Fox Sports-Tennessee or you can listen live on 102.5 The Game. Puck drops at 5:00 pm!