Sorry for the lateness, but the Ducks take on the Nashville Predators tonight in Nashville. Here’s my preview:
The Predators are a different team then they were last year. They lost a lot of players in free agency, but a few things remain, and their pretty important. One is Pekka Rinne in net. He is one of the best goalies in all of the NHL. Two is the arguably the best defensive pairing in all of the nHL in Shea Weber and Ryan Suter. And three is their longtime leader in David Legwand. Last year the Predators weren’t a very good offensive team and it is the same again this year. They score just over two goals a game, but they only allow about two and a half goals per game. Another big piece that they still have is scorer Mike Fisher who has registered 2 goals and 2 assists in just two games this season as he missed most of the early part of the year due to injury. Fisher had two goals in the Preds last game against the Lightning on thursday. Other players that are pretty dangerous offensively are Sergei Kostitsyn and Craig Smith. Like I said earlier, this team thrives on good defense, mostly Weber, Suter and Rinne. They focus on team play in every aspect of the game.
Players to Watch:
- NSH – F – Mike Fisher: Again, in just two games this season, he has two goals and two assists for four points. Very smart, talented veteran player for the Preds.
- NSH – G – Pekka Rinne: Played very well against a very good offensive team in Tampa. He made 29 saves to register his 99th career win. (However, I have not heard that it is confirmed that Rinne will be starting. If it is not Rinne, it will be youngster Anders Lindback.)
- ANA – F – Teemu Selanne: He is coming off a good game in Minnesota where he had 3 assists for the 3 Ducks’ goals. I believe it was around his 28th or 29th career game with three assists or three points, I don’t really remember which one it was.
- ANA – RPG Line: They were all over the Minnesota Wild. They’re starting to score more goals so thats good. Look for them to be facing the Weber-Suter defensive pairing.
The Ducks improved in Minnesota but now they will be playing a more defensively minded Nashville team. I think that the second and third lines will have to provide some scoring in this one as the RPG Line may be shut down by Weber and Suter. If they play like they did in Minnesota, they should be able to come out of Nashville with some points.
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