Nashville Predators: If the team wants to win, four players must step up…now

(Photo by John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images)
(Photo by John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images) /
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(Photo by John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images)
(Photo by John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images) /

Another tough loss for the Nashville Predators leads to more concerns over the roster. With dreams of winning the Stanley Cup in their minds, four players must improve their play. Now.

There is no doubt the Nashville Predators want to contend for the Stanley Cup. After an amazing run to the NHL’s crown jewel of games, hopes and dreams of the team and all of Smashville is to make a return. Despite the off start to the season, those dreams are still possible. But, they are dimming just a bit.

When you look at the roster, you see talent. Possibility. Ability to score and defend at the highest level. And the physicality to push opponents away from the net. However, it is not happening. At least not yet.

Injuries to major pieces are forcing coach Peter Laviolette to mix-and-match lines like my kids do socks. The lack of production from some players is alarming, and the minutes being played by others is arresting.

The facts are simple. The Nashville Predators need some players to step up now. The team cannot rely solely on Filip Forsberg, Roman Josi, and Viktor Arvidsson. The balance of goal-scoring is heavily on the front lines. Because of that fact, the Predators are last in the NHL in even-strength goals. They are 10 goals behind the 15th place team, the Washington Capitals. As for overall scoring, the Predators are tied with two teams for 28th. Only the Edmonton Oilers have scored less goals.

We can all agree improvements must be made. The road trip should help building chemistry. Eight days of being around each other while traveling means opportunities for quality time. Still, if the Nashville Predators want to win consistently, four players must step up their games. Sooner than later.