Game Preview: Nashville Predators v. Philadelphia Flyers

Your Nashville Predators take on the Philadelphia Flyers tonight at 7:00 CST at Bridgestone Arena. Let’s see how these teams stack up.

Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

Current Record

  • Predators 13-11-2 (28 pts) 5th in the Central
  • Flyers 11-12-2 (24 pts) 6th in the Metropolitan

Last Five

  • Predators 3-2-0
  • Flyers 3-2-0

Stats

  • Goals per game – Preds 2.3 (24th) – Flyers 2.2 (25th)
  • Goals against – Preds 2.7 (18th) – Flyers 2.5 (11th)
  • Power Play % – Preds 21.0 (9th) – Flyers 16.3 (22nd)
  • Penalty Kill % – Preds 84.5 (9th) – Flyers 81.4 (17th)

The Preds season has been a tale of two teams. The good Preds come out hard and play an aggressive, grinding style commonly known as Predators hockey. They forecheck hard and draw penalties with their speed and relentlessness. They get the puck to the net and all the forwards drive hard for rebound opportunities. The good Preds have also been defensively responsible which has led to decreased goals against and more scoring opportunities on the rush.

Then we have the bad Preds. The bad Preds do not play with enough effort and consistency to overcome a roster without a top star and consistent offensive threat. They do not create chances on the forecheck or the rush and have been lackadaisical in their defensive coverage. Those Preds have been shutout a league-high six times this season, including Thursday night against the Oilers.

The first key for the Preds tonight will be making sure the right team shows up to play. When the Preds show up their penalty killing and power play have been near the top of the league. The Preds will almost certainly get some power play chances tonight and they need to take advantage of them. The Flyers currently lead the lead in overall penalty minutes with 414 and penalty minutes per game with 17.25. The Preds will need to take advantage of their opportunities if they want to beat the Flyers. The Flyers are also tied for third in fighting majors, so it is pretty likely at least Rich Clune will find himself a dance partner.

The Flyers have also been a team with a couple of different stories this season. They started off with one win in their first eight games and looked at times like they would never find their way. That has all started to change as the Flyers are 7-3-0 in their last ten and starting to get offensive contributions from their key players. Claude Giroux started off dreadful but has turned it on with points in eight of his last ten games. He is again showing why he is the leader of this team, both on and off the ice. The Flyers big off-season pickup also has gotten his game going lately, Vincent Lecavalier is starting to look more comfortable with his linemates and has points in four of his last five. The key for Philadelphia will be discipline and trying to get on the board early.

Prediction - Predators 4-1. The Preds bounce back from a lackluster effort and handle the Flyers.

*****

Scott Gardner is the Editor at Predlines.com and can be reached at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @scottcgardner. For the latest updates in Predator news, follow @PredlinesNSH and like Predlines on Facebook.

Topics: Nashville Predators

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