By Amanda DiPaolo
When the Nashville Predators host the Dallas Stars on Tuesday night, Nashville’s lineup will be a far cry from what it looked like on opening night in October.
Martin Erat is out with a lower body injury. Steve Sullivan is expected to miss up to two weeks with a lower-body injury. David Legwand has missed the last several games, but may play Tuesday night against the Stars. Matthew Lombardi has not played since Nashville’s second game of the season in Chicago and is out indefinitely with a concussion.
On Monday, Jordin Tootoo voluntarily entered into the NHL’s substance abuse and behavioral health program.
With three, and potentially four, of Nashville’s top-six forwards out of the lineup, as well as the energetic Tootoo, Nashville needs some players to step up in hopes of ending their four-game losing streak.
Linus Klasen played his second NHL game of the season on Sunday against the Blues. Klasen took Erat’s spot beside Marcel Goc and Sergei Kostitsyn. Expect Klasen to keep that spot for Tuesday night’s game.
The Predators signed Chris Mueller to a two-way contract Monday afternoon in the wake of the news about Tootoo. Mueller is in his second season with the Milwaukee Admirals, but was unsigned by the Predators. Mueller was also second in points for the Admiral, with 20, behind Klasen who has 27 points for Milwaukee.
Nick Spaling was the first player called up from Milwaukee this season. Spaling’s impressive play on the penalty kill may have earned himself a regular roster spot, no matter who returns to the lineup healthy.
Dallas has no injuries but two players are battling illnesses. Both Nicklas Grossman and Tom Wandell are listed as questionable for Tuesday’s game against the Predators.
Nashville, having had won five in a row are now losers of four straight and will try to end the losing skid against one of the best teams in the Western Conference. The two teams already met once this season, when Pekka Rinne shutout the Stars in Dallas 1-0, October 23rd.
Last time out, Nashville were shut out by the Blues 2-0 on Sunday. The Predators have scored only 3 goals in the last four games. Scoring goals is a problem for Nashville right now. When the Predators collected points in 10 consecutive games, the team outscored opponents 31-14. In the last four games, Nashville has been outscored 14-3.
The Stars are losers of two straight and will try to turn things around against the Predators at Bridgestone Arena. On Sunday, Phoenix shutout Dallas 1-0.
Limited tickets are still available for Tuesday night’s game. There are only a few hundred seats left and Smashville is looking to sellout again so don’t wait to pick up those seats.
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.
Tags: Brenden Morrow Chris Mueller Dallas Stars David Legwand Jordin Tootoo Linus Klasen Martin Erat Matthew Lombardi Nashville Predators NHL Nick Spaling Pekka Rinne Phoenix Coyotes St. Louis Blues Steve Sullivan