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Practice Day Report: April 2

Monday, 04.2.2012 / 3:48 PM CT / News
By Doug Brumley  - Nashville Predators
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Practice Day Report: April 2
The Nashville Predators’ day got started with the annual team photo Monday morning on Bridgestone Arena ice. Predators and Bridgestone Arena employees also joined the team for a group picture before the photo shoot concluded and practice got under way. Once it did, the team was focused on the final week of the regular season.

“Obviously there are three big games that are going to determine where we finish here,” team captain Shea Weber said. “And tomorrow, Minnesota’s playing well so we’ve got to be ready for them.”

Practice consisted of drills with five offensive lines, followed by special teams work. Head coach Barry Trotz said he wants to use the last three games to sharpen up the details, especially on defense. Puck management continues to be a big focus as well. But he told gathered media that his primary focus is on goaltender Pekka Rinne. Even playoff seeding takes a backseat to Rinne’s preparedness, according to Trotz.

“If I had to prioritize anything, No. 1 is making sure that Pekka is ready and gets enough rest,” Trotz said. “We’ve been cutting him down in terms of number of shots and cutting him down in game day skates and all that. We’ve been trying to manage that the last little while. Hopefully, he’ll be fully recharged so he can play the games. He’s actually, in the last couple of games, had lots of jump in the games. Where we have to be very careful is the day after or the practice days, to manage that a little better. And we’re very cognizant of that.”

Pekka himself said after practice that he personally feels good at this point in the season. Like the rest of his teammates, he wants to see the team get on a bit of a roll to close out the last three regular season games.

“I think you always want to finish with your game feeling confident and your game in order,” Rinne said. “I think that’s our goal, to finish strong and just get physically and mentally prepared for the playoffs. I think that’s the biggest thing, just to be ready to go right away when the playoffs start.”

Monday’s lines:
Mike Fisher with Sergei Kostitsyn and Martin Erat
David Legwand with Andrei Kostitsyn and Alexander Radulov
Nick Spaling with Gabriel Bourque and Patric Hornqvist
Paul Gaustad with Brandon Yip and Matt Halischuk
Craig Smith with Colin Wilson and Jordin Tootoo
Extra skaters: Brian McGrattan, Jack Maclellan

Defense pairings:
Ryan Suter and Shea Weber
Hal Gill and Roman Josi
Francis Bouillon and Kevin Klein
Jack Hillen and Ryan Ellis

Power play units:
Mike Fisher, Patric Hornqvist, Martin Erat, Ryan Suter and Shea Weber
David Legwand, Sergei Kostitsyn, Andrei Kostitsyn, Alexander Radulov and Roman Josi

Penalty killing units:
Nick Spaling, Paul Gaustad, Francis Bouillon and Jack Hillen
Jordin Tootoo, Gabriel Bourque, Hal Gill and Kevin Klein
**Note: forwards Erat, Fisher, Legwand, and Sergei Kostitsyn are also regular PK contributors in games, but were working the PP units during today's drills

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WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 z - DAL 82 50 23 9 267 230 109
2 x - STL 82 49 24 9 224 201 107
3 x - CHI 82 47 26 9 235 209 103
4 y - ANA 82 46 25 11 218 192 103
5 x - LAK 82 48 28 6 225 195 102
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11 WPG 82 35 39 8 215 239 78
12 CGY 82 35 40 7 231 260 77
13 VAN 82 31 38 13 191 243 75
14 EDM 82 31 43 8 203 245 70

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
F. Forsberg 82 33 31 1 64
R. Josi 81 14 47 -3 61
J. Neal 82 31 27 27 58
S. Weber 78 20 31 -7 51
M. Ribeiro 81 7 43 11 50
C. Smith 82 21 16 4 37
M. Ekholm 82 8 27 14 35
R. Johansen 42 8 26 10 34
R. Ellis 79 10 22 13 32
C. Jarnkrok 81 16 14 1 30
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
P. Rinne 34 21 10 .908 2.48
C. Hutton 7 5 4 .918 2.33