Much has been discussed regarding the phenomenal start of the Nashville Predators power-play this season. The Preds are currently ranked 6th in the league with a conversion percentage of 25.0% with a man-advantage. When the Predators are at even strength, they aredownright awful. The coaching staff has got to figure out a way to get the team going when they are in the five-on-five scenarios. Nashville is currently 30th in the league with only 11 goals at even strength, 11th with a man-advantage, and third with a two man-advantage. It is time to get this offense rolling, and there’s no better time than the present.
After a gritty 2-1 win against the Chicago Blackhawks last night in the Windy City, the Nashville Predators are projected to give Pekka Rinne the night off, and young Juuse Saros will get a start in net. Saros has yet to get a win on the season after an 0-2-0 start, 3.53 goals-against average, and .854 save percentage. The young Finland native has under-performed this season compared to his stellar .923 save percentage and 2.35 goals-against average from last season. If he can’t figure out the game, and perform more consistently onthe NHL level, you could see a possible change in the back-up position. Jaroslav Halak will start in goal for the Islanders tonight. Halak is 3-2-0 with a 2.72 goals-against average and a .913 save percentage on the season.
Forsberg’s Hot Start
Filip Forsberg has been a typically slow starter at the beginning of the season. Last season, Forsberg had three goals only thirty games into the season. This season, there is no such lull. He continues to lead the club with seven goals and 12 points, and with the lack of secondary scoring, it seems that the club will need the Ostervala, Sweeden native to continue toproduce at an extremely high level early in the season. Forsberg has netted a point in all, but three, contests this season. He has yet to not have a point in back-to-back matchups, and is set for production tonight after not scoring a point against Chicago last night.
The Predators will look to continue their winning ways as they come back to Nashville for a clash with the New York Islanders. 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 7:00 pm!