The Nashville Predators look to stay hot against Vancouver and get closer to the divisional leaders.
The Nashville Predators are peaking at the right time in the season.
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Since February 12, Nashville is tied with the Anaheim Ducks for the most points in the NHL (29 points) and four points away from surpassing the divisional foe Chicago Blackhawks. Any team would be clicking on all cylinders if their top two lines played like First Liners, if their PK was 100% in the last 26 attempts, and if their goaltender has a .933 Sv% in his last 14 appearances.
Now it’s time for the Nashville Predators to grab some revenge against the Vancouver Canucks. Vancouver comes into the match on a five-game losing streak and a franchise-worst 228-minute scoreless drought. It’s time for the Predators to capitalize and gain some ground on the top three in the division.
The last time the Preds played the Canucks, Nashville was riding a 14 game point streak and I believe we all saw the streak continuing to 15. But the Canucks came out as a brand new team and stunned Nashville in a 4-2 victory for Vancouver.
Since then, Vancouver is 0-5-0 and seems to have forgotten how to score goals as they are scoreless in the last 3 appearances. Could they turn it around and stun Nashville again? Yes, they’ve done it before and they always play in an extra gear versus the Predators. This game should all but be a lock for the Predators to win with the injury bug hitting Vancouver extremely hard. Chris Tanev, Markus Granlund, Derek Dorsett, Yannick Weber, and Luca Sbisa are all day-to-day while Radim Vrbata is out for the season. Daniel Sedin also left practice early on Wednesday for an undisclosed reason.
Vancouver is limping to the finish and should prepare themselves for a rocking Bridgestone Arena in Smashville on Thursday. The game should be fun and entertaining to watch. Vancouver seems weak right now but if they get a chance, they will surely capitalize.
On Monday night versus potential 1st round opponent Los Angeles, everything went right! Mike Fisher was greeted on ice by
his wife Carrie Underwood and their future NHL top goal scoring son Isaiah and the Smashville faithful celebrated his 1,000th game. Eric Nystrom also made his long awaited return while Forsberg, Neal, Johansen, and Josi put the puck into the net propelling the Predators to a 5-2 victory. From what I could feel and what I tell, Bridgestone was rocking and the Predators are ready for Playoff hockey.
Nashville is a scary team right now in the NHL. Almost everything has gone right for the Predators lately. The team has been led by their Prince, Filip Forsberg. He is only three goals away from tying former captain Jason Arnott‘s record at 33 goals in a single season. Forsberg hasn’t been the only goal scorer of late as the Real Deal James Neal has made an impact too. He sits two goals away from reaching 30 just like Filip. Pekka is back to his usual brick wall game and has been unstoppable of late.
I am ready and confident for this year in the playoffs. A few brilliant trades for Forsberg and RyJo have left the Predators in the driver’s seat even though we are currently a fourth seed. When Nashville plays Vancouver on Thursday night, it will not disappoint. Hopefully, Pekka is a brick wall and extends the Canucks scoreless drought to 288 minutes with a shutout. The game will be physical leaving the team black and blue for the next day or two but that will be perfectly fine as they will walk out of Bridgestone with the win.
Just like my last prediction against Vancouver, I see this game being a victory for Nashville. The Predators are just too hot for the Canucks right now. Even if Vancouver got all their players healthy they will still be under conditioned, unlike the high-flying Nashville Predators.
If Nashville wins Thursday night they will move within two points of Chicago. This season has turned from a near-disaster to a potential Golden Moment for the Preds.
The Nashville Predators will continue their home-stand as former 4th overall pick Seth Jones returns to Nashville in a Columbus Blue Jacket uniform. Nashville vs Columbus is the third of four games in the homestand.