The Nashville Predators play their first of two games in two days when they take on the New Jersey Devils tonight.
The Devils make a rare visit to Nashville, bringing with them two veterans that will likely be traveling to Bridgestone Arena for the final time in their careers.
- Final Farewell: Devils forward Jaromir Jagr and goaltender Martin Brodeur have spent a combined 47 years in the NHL, and both players have enjoyed hall-of-fame quality careers. Each in the twilight (no, that’s not a Matt Cullen reference) phase of their time in the NHL, Jagr and Brodeur are likely playing in their final season. Unfortunately the storybook ending is ruined a bit for Brodeur, as he’ll actually be backing up netminder Cory Schneider tonight and taking in his (likely) final game in Nashville from the bench. The 41-year-old Jagr, on the other hand, will be on the ice and has shown he still very much possesses the talent he’s had for all these years. The forward has 16 goals on the season, a total that would tie him with Craig Smith for the most goals scored by a Predators player this campaign.
- Surprising Choices in Net: As we mentioned above, Schneider will be start for New Jersey tonight. The goalie also played last night in Dallas, picking up a 3-2 win in overtime. Both Devils goalies have played in 28 games this season, so Schneider making two starts in two nights is a little rare. On the other end of the ice, Predators goalie Carter Hutton will go for his sixth win in his last seven games. Nashville’s head coach Barry Trotz will be putting Hutton between the pipes as his team starts two games in two nights, so it will be interesting to see if Hutton is asked to start on consecutive days as well. The Predators face the stronger team on Saturday in the St. Louis Blues, so it seems a little odd that Hutton would play tonight.
- Injuries: The Predators will again be without forwards Matt Cullen and Viktor Stalberg (upper-body injuries), but the team will have their captain Shea Weber, who has been listed as day-to-day with an upper-body injury, in the lineup.
Puck drop is at 7:00 p.m. (CST) between these two clubs.