DUCKS (32-8-5) at PREDATORS (19-19-6)
TV: FOX Sports Tennessee (Dish: 446/HD: 9516; Direct TV: 644/HD: 644-1 ; Comcast Nashville 1675; Comcast Chattanooga/Cleveland/Knoxville 401; Comcast Memphis 830; Charter Nashville 33/810; AT&T Nashville 724/1724)
Radio: Preds Radio Network Flagship - 102.5-FM The Game Radio Network; Network Affiliates
STORYLINES VS. ANAHEIM
The Nashville Predators and Anaheim Ducks meet for the first time in 2013-14 on Thursday night at Bridgestone Arena. Anaheim will return to the Music City on Feb. 8, before the Preds head to Pacific Coast on April 4. Nashville has collected at least a point in eight of its last nine games against the Ducks dating back to Jan. 5, 2011. The Preds are 6-1-2 in those games. The Preds are 15-7-(2)-3 all-time against the Ducks on Bridgestone Arena ice.
These teams last met in the Music City on Feb. 16, 2013, as David Legwand scored early for the Preds, before Shea Weber tallied his first goal of the 2012-13 season – the 100th goal of his career – in the middle frame. The score would remain knotted at two goals through regulation and overtime, before Corey Perry beat Pekka Rinne in the post-overtime skills competition for the win.
Patric Hornqvist has 14 points (6g-8a) in 17 career games against the Ducks… Gabriel Bourque has assists in two of his first four career games against Anaheim… Craig Smith has four points (3g-1a) in seven career games against Anaheim… Matt Cullen, who Anaheim drafted in the second round of the 1996 NHL Entry Draft, posted 200 points (65g-135a) in 427 games with the Ducks. As a member of the opposition, Cullen has recorded 13 points (5g-8a) in 17 career games against Anaheim.
CAREER HIGHLIGHT VS. ANAHEIM
Shea Weber tied his career-high 10 shots on goal on Jan. 2, 2010 vs. Anaheim.
WEBER TAKES THE LEAD
With his 60th career multiple-point game (2a) against San Jose on Tuesday night, and his third multi-point effort in his last four games, Shea Weber continues to be a dominant force for Nashville. Nashville’s captain has posted seven points (1g-6a) in his last four outings and 17 points (3g-14a) in his last 15 games. Tuesday’s multi-point outing tied Weber with Kimmo Timonen for the most by a defenseman in club history.
• Weber has assisted on five of Nashville's last six goals, including helpers in four straight games, tying his career high for the third time.
• From Jan. 4 (at Florida) to Jan. 7 (vs. San Jose), Weber posted a stretch where he was credited with the secondary assist on four straight Nashville goals. With his assist on Sunday in Carolina, Weber became just the fifth Nashville player to post 200 helpers in their career (Martin Erat, David Legwand, Ryan Suter and Timonen).
• Weber has taken over Nashville’s points lead (10g-19a-29pts) and moved into the League’s Top 10 in defensive scoring.
• Weber is one of just four defensemen to lead their team in scoring (Dustin Byfuglien (WPG), Erik Karlsson (OTT) and P.K. Subban (MTL)).
• Weber is tied with Byfuglien, Karlsson and Torey Krug (BOS) for the League’s defensive goal-scoring lead (10). Half of Weber’s 10 goals have come in the first period. The Preds are 7-1-2 when their captain finds the back of the net.
• The Sicamous, B.C., native’s 15 power-play points (7g-8a) are good for fourth among League defensemen (tie), while his seven power-play goals pace all blueliners.
• Weber is fourth in the League in average time on ice this season (26:43) and has played past the half-hour mark on five occasions.
• Weber leads the team and ranks seventh in the League in blocked shots (100), in addition to ranking second on the team in hits (94).
• Weber was named to his second consecutive Canadian Olympic team on Tuesday. During the 2010 Olympics, he was named to the tournament’s all-star team after tying for second among blueliners in points (2g-4a).
• Fisher has 10 points (4g-6a) in his last six games. It is the most point-heavy streak of Fisher’s career since Jan. 22-29, 2008, when he posted seven points (2g-5a) in three games. The Peterborough, Ont., native leads all Preds forwards in ice time (19:02) – more than two minutes higher than the next closest forward (David Legwand, 16:39). He also leads club forwards in blocked shots (38) and ranks third in hits (74).
• Hornqvist has seven points (2g-5a) in his last nine outings to rank fourth on the team in scoring (9g-15a-24pts), while he leads the team and ranks 21st in the League with 134 shots on goal. With his goal on Sunday night in Carolina, the Sollentuna, Sweden native moved into a four-way tie for seventh on the club’s all-time goal-scoring list and into lone possession of seventh on the all-time power-play goals list (32).
• With an assist on Tuesday, Smith has nine points (6g-3a) in his last 10 games, moving him into first in goals and third in team scoring (12g-13a-25pts). Sixteen (6g-10a) of Smith’s 25 points this season have come on home ice, while he’s posted a team-high +9 rating at Bridgestone Arena. The Madison, Wis., native owns three of Nashville’s seven two-goal performances this season.
• Wilson has seven points (2g-5a) in his last seven games as he continues to climb the Preds point-scoring leaderboard (7g-15a-22pts). With his assist on Roman Josi’s game winner on Tuesday night, Wilson now has six points (2g-4a) on game-winning goals this season.
PLAYER QUICK HITS
• Paul Gaustad has won 433-of-733 face-offs (59.1 percent), to rank second in the League in the category (minimum 700 draws).
• Seth Jones has five points (1g-4a) in his last six games, and is tied for 14th among first-year players in points (4g-12a-16pts). The Plano, Texas native ranks second in time on ice (20:58) and games played (44), fourth in blocked shots (62), sixth in power-play points (6), and ninth in even-strength assists and power-play goals (2) among rookies.
• With the game-winning goal on Tuesday night, Roman Josi has nine points (4g-5a) in his last 15 games. The game winner was Josi’s first since an overtime goal on Feb. 25, 2013. The Bern, Switzerland native has led the team in ice time in six of the last 14 games to rank second on the team and eighth among the League defensemen in the category (25:40). Josi was recently named to his first Swiss Olympic team after missing the 2010 Games with an injury.
POWER PLAY PROWESS
Eleven of Nashville’s last 34 goals have come on the man advantage, including power-play tallies in nine of the team’s last 13 games. The Preds power play remains one of the League’s most potent (sixth, 20.7 percent), while Nashville’s home power play ranks among the League’s Top Five (fifth, 23.9 percent) after posting a man-advantage goal in seven of its last eight games at Bridgestone Arena (nine for 27). The Preds are now 15-4-2 when they score a power-play goal. Shea Weber leads the team with 15 points (7g-8a) on the man advantage this season.
TEAM QUICK HITS
• With their win over San Jose on Tuesday, the Preds improved to 5-2-2 against the Pacific Division.
• Nine of Nashville’s 19 wins this season have come by one goal – the team is 9-1-6 in one-goal games (.563).
• The Predators are 16-1-4 when they score first (.762), and are 14-0-1 when leading after the first period (.933, second in the League).
• The Preds have not allowed a shorthanded goal since March 21, 2013, when Calgary scored two shorthanded goals – a span of 61 games. Nashville is the only team in the League not to have allowed a shorthanded goal this season.
• Nashville leads the League in team face-off win percentage this season (54.2 percent). The Preds have been better than 50 percent in the face-off circle in 35 of their 44 games.
LAST TIME OUT: Nashville 3, San Jose 2 at Bridgestone Arena
• David Legwand opened the scoring for Nashville 3:35 into the second period. It was his first goal since Dec. 12 against Dallas. Legwand later added an assist to complete his ninth multiple-point game of the season.
• Mattias Ekholm scored the first goal of his 32-game career in the second period.
• Nashville tied a season high for goals in a period with three in the middle frame (eight times).
• Nashville’s centermen won 62 percent of the draws, led by Legwand (10-of-12, 83 percent) and Paul Gaustad (16-of-26, 62 percent).
• Nashville and San Jose tied with 28 shots on goal apiece. It was the third time this season Nashville has tied its opponent in shots on goal.
15TH ANNIVERSARY MOMENT
January 10, 2009 – Steve Sullivan’s return after nearly two years nets him the Masterton Trophy
“I was thrilled with the ovation,” Sullivan said. “These are probably the best fans in the world. For them to wait for me and show me the respect they did was awesome.”
After missing 142 consecutive regular-season games, and being sidelined for 687 days, Steve Sullivan returned to the Predators lineup from a back injury that required two operations and countless hours of frustrating rehab. Amidst a standing ovation, the long-time alternate captain and Predators leader returned to the ice for the first time since Feb. 22, 2007. Sully saw 20 shifts, totaling 12:30 of ice time, including 2:34 on the power play, and three shots on goal in a 4-1 home victory over the Chicago Blackhawks.
Sullivan’s comeback earned him the 2009 Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy, which is awarded annually to the NHL player who “best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship, and dedication to hockey.” He was Nashville’s first NHL award winner.
“Steve Sullivan epitomizes all the qualities that the Masterton Trophy stands for and we are thrilled that he has been recognized for all of the hard work and dedication he has shown to both our team, and the sport of hockey,” Predators General Manager and President of Hockey Operations David Poile said. “Not only did he serve as an inspiration for our team and community off the ice, but was a significant contributor to the club as he regained his form.”
After an understandably slow start, Sullivan hit his stride and quickly became a key part of Nashville’s late-season surge. He finished the season with 32 points (11g-21a) in 41 games.
|Back to top ↑|