The Nashville Predators take on the Calgary Flames at Bridgestone Arena tonight. The last time either of these two teams played was Saturday night. The Predators lost to the Capitals in overtime after taking a 2-0 lead into the third period. Calgary had a breakout game against the Edmonton Oilers, winning 5-3.
Last year, the road team won each game in the four-game series between these two teams. No matter who wins Tuesday night, the storyline will have to be about injuries.
Saturday’s loss for Nashville was more than just on the scoreboard. Marcel Goc suffered a separated shoulder and is expected to miss 2-4 weeks. Goc was hit from behind by Washington’s Niklas Backstrom. Coach Barry Trotz said he thought the league would look at the hit because it a dangerous hit, the kind the league is trying to get out of the game. However, the league took no action.
Both the Flames and Nashville have significant injuries. Besides Goc, Matthew Lombardi has a concussion and will not play. It has not been announced for certain in starting goaltender Pekka Rinne will start the game. We should know after the morning skate. Martin Erat is expected to be able to play against Calgary.
Calgary’s Daymond Langkow is out with a broken vertebrae. Ryan Stone and Ales Kotalik have sustained knee injuries. David Moss and Adam Pardy are out with shoulder injuries and Raitis Ivanans and Rene Bourque are both questionable for the Flames on Tuesday night.
Reports out of Calgary say that Rene Bourque did make the trip to Nashville.
Nashville will have to juggle lines to deal with the injuries. Look for Jordin Tootoo to again be on a line with David Legwand and Joel Ward.
Colin Wilson will be moved back to center on a line with Marty Erat and JP Dumont. While Steve Sullivan has four goals for the Predators already, Dumont is on a four game point streak (1g-3a). The Erat-Wilson-Dumont experiment practiced together Monday and looked really sharp. Further, since his first year with Nashville in 2006-07, Dumont has registered 14 points (5g-9a) in 16 games against Calgary. Look for good things out of Nashville’s top line.
Are you looking for tickets to an upcoming Predators home game? Follow this link for discounted tickets. Make an account and then use the word Preds as the code for the discount. Predators upcoming home games include tonight against the Calgary Flames and Thursday night when Sidney Crosby visits Smashville!