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Game Day Blog: Preds vs. St. Louis Blues

Thursday, 04.1.2010 / 2:12 PM CT / Preview
By Tom Callahan  - Nashville Predators
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Game Day Blog: Preds vs. St. Louis Blues
Nashville Predators vs. St. Louis Blues
Bridgestone Arena, 7 pm
TV:
Fox Sports Tennessee (HD)  |  Radio: 104.5 The Zone, Predators Radio Network

 Morning Skate Photo Gallery
The Predators find themselves on the cusp of a playoff berth, but thanks to the pesky Calgary Flames won't be able to clinch it tonight. Honestly, it makes no difference to the team.

Echoing around the locker room prior to this morning's game was the sentiment that to a man - head coach to trainer and anyone in between - the team isn't in yet, and until they are they refuse to feel any sort of comfort in numbers that seem to tell an inevitable tale. Yes, one win and three points locks out the Flames. Yes, it would seem a tall order for Calgary to knock out the Predators (though not some of the other teams that are just below, especially Colorado). And yes, this team has finally gotten through its toughest stretch of the year, playing 17 games in March's 31 days.

However, tonight the Predators face a Blues team that has tried to salvage its season and is currently on a hot streak. St. Louis comes in with three in a row under its belt and looking to make it four. They're not out of the playoffs either, and you never know which team in front of you could falter. So St. Louis is looking to finish strong and keep the ball rolling here tonight.

Don't forget that the Predators had to rally and win in the final minutes of the third period against the Blues last time the two teams met. It wasn't looking all that rosy for the good guys until late in the game when Dustin Boyd stepped up with his second of the night to earn the win. So don't expect either team to take its opponent lightly tonight.

It should be a very intense game here tonight, one that hockey fans can appreciate no matter which side you're rooting for.

Notes:
  • Jason Arnott did skate today on his own, but said he's still day-to-day and there's no concrete timetable for his return.
  • Alex Steen had two goals and an assist in the Blues' 4-2 win over Chicago, moving him into first on the team with 23 goals.
  • Paul Kariya (lower body) is day-to-day after leaving the Chicago game in the first period.
Keys to the Game
  • Nashville has to bring its compete level for 60 minutes. It's no secret Nashville has been up and down for periods here and there. It's time to cobble that all together heading into the playoffs.
  • Better traffic/net presence. We harp on this a lot. Well, if Jonathan Bernier had seen fewer pucks, maybe it's a different game. Any NHL goalie will stop what he sees 98% of the time. Cut down his vision to 50/50 and see how it goes.
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WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 DAL 56 36 15 5 182 150 77
2 CHI 59 36 18 5 162 137 77
3 STL 57 31 17 9 138 133 71
4 LAK 54 33 18 3 151 128 69
5 SJS 54 29 20 5 158 144 63
6 ANA 54 27 19 8 123 127 62
7 COL 58 29 25 4 155 160 62
8 NSH 56 26 21 9 147 148 61
9 ARI 55 25 24 6 144 168 56
10 MIN 55 23 22 10 135 138 56
11 VAN 55 22 21 12 127 149 56
12 CGY 54 25 26 3 144 160 53
13 WPG 55 25 27 3 140 158 53
14 EDM 57 22 29 6 139 169 50

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
R. Josi 56 11 31 0 42
F. Forsberg 56 18 18 -7 36
S. Weber 56 15 21 -2 36
M. Ribeiro 56 6 30 3 36
J. Neal 56 21 14 19 35
M. Ekholm 56 6 19 3 25
R. Ellis 55 6 16 2 22
C. Jarnkrok 55 11 8 2 19
C. Smith 56 11 7 -1 18
R. Johansen 16 4 12 6 16
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
P. Rinne 20 18 8 .902 2.57
C. Hutton 6 2 1 .924 2.10