Nashville
Predators
38-32-12
Tampa Bay
Lightning
46-27-9

30 SOG
33 SOG
1st2nd3rdT
NSH
TBL
game preview

Preds Head to Tampa

Wednesday, 12.18.2013 / 2:06 PM

Jimi Russell - Nashville Predators

PREDATORS (16-15-3) at LIGHTNING (20-11-3)

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. TAMPA BAY
The Nashville Predators head to Tampa Bay to take on the Lightning at Tampa Bay Times Forum for just the eighth time ever and just the third time in the last seven seasons. Nashville is 2-3-(2)-0 in their seven previous trips to Tampa.

These teams last met up on Oct. 27, 2011 at Bridgestone Arena, when Mike Fisher scored two goals and added an assist to lead Nashville to a 5-3 win. Patric Hornqvist and Nick Spaling also scored for the Preds, while Pekka Rinne made 29 saves to record his fourth victory of the season. Steven Stamkos had two goals and Teddy Purcell had one for the Lightning.

In their last trip to Tampa Bay on Oct. 24, 2010, Anders Lindback, now with the Lightning, made 42 saves to lead Nashville to its first victory in Tampa since its inaugural season, 4-3.

Craig Smith (2a) and Spaling (1g-1a) both posted multi-point outings in the last meeting. Spaling, who made his NHL debut against Tampa on Dec. 15, 2009, has four points (1g-3a) in three career meetings, while Smith has two points in one game against Tampa… Mike Fisher posted three points (2g-1a) in the last meeting between these teams, and he leads all Preds with 24 points (12g-12a) in 33 career games against the Lightning… Matt Cullen has posted 23 points (7g-16a) in 50 career games against Tampa… Paul Gaustad has posted his second-highest point total against an individual team with 16 points (6g-10a) in 26 games against the Lightning.

THE CAPTAIN LEADS
After posting his sixth power-play goal of the year on Tuesday night against Chicago, Shea Weber has now posted five points (1g-4a) in his last five games.

• The effort moved Weber into a tie for second in team scoring (8g-9a-17pts). Five of his eight goals have come in the first period.
• Tuesday night’s goal was also Weber’s franchise-leading 55th career power-play marker.
• Weber is tied with Torey Krug (BOS) for third in goals among blueliners (8). Nashville’s captain is the only defenseman in the League to lead his team in goals.
• The Sicamous, B.C., native has posted 11 power-play points (6g-5a), good for seventh among League defensemen (tie), while his six power-play goals lead all blueliners (tie).
• The Preds are 7-1-0 when their captain finds the back of the net.
• Weber has led Nashville in ice time in 19 of the last 25 games he’s played to rank fifth in the League in the category (26:21).
• Nashville’s captain is tied with Kevin Klein for the team lead and ranks 16th in the League in blocked shots (69), in addition to ranking second on the team in hits (76).

JOSI ON A ROLL
Roman Josi
is riding a five-game point streak (2g-4a-6pts) after posting the primary assist on Shea Weber’s goal against the Blackhawks. Josi’s current streak ties his career long (March 15-23, 2013). It is also the longest streak by a Predator this season. The Bern, Switzerland native has led the team in ice time in two of the last five games, and ranks second on the team and among the League’s Top 25 defensemen in the category (24:43).

PLAYER QUICK HITS
• Since becoming a father for the first time on Nov. 12, Gabriel Bourque has posted nine points (3g-6a) in the last 13 games he’s played.
Matt Cullen has posted nine points (3g-6a) in his last 15 games. Cullen also ranks among the League’s top face-off men (eighth, 57 percent), winning 227-of-398 draws.
• After posting four goals in his last 11 outings, Mike Fisher is now tied with Patric Hornqcist for second in team goal scoring. Five of his seven goals have come on Bridgestone Arena ice. The Peterborough, Ont., native also leads all Preds forwards in ice time (18:44) – more than two minutes higher than the next closest forward (David Legwand, 16:24) – and blocked shots (27), while he ranks third in hits (53).
• With four points (2g-2a) in his last four games, Paul Gaustad has more than doubled his points output from his previous 30 games, and has moved within two points of hitting the 200-point plateau for his career. The Portland, Ore., native has won 345-of-573 face-offs (60.2 percent), to rank second the League in the category (minimum 500 draws).
Seth Jones leads all first-year players in average time on ice (22:09). The Plano, Texas native ranks among the League’s Top 25 first-year players in points (3g-7a-10pts), assists, goals and shots (48), while ranking third in blocked shots (55), fourth in power-play points (5) and sixth in power-play goals (2) among rookies.
David Legwand has five points (1g-4a) in his last four games, and 18 points (5g-13a) in his last 22 outings to lead the team with 25 points (6g-19a) in 34 games. Fifteen (5g-10a) of Legwand’s 25 points have come away from the Music City.
Eric Nystrom is one goal shy of matching his output from last season (7g in 48gp). Nystrom leads the team in hits and ranks among the League’s Top 25 forwards in the category (83).
Craig Smith has eight points (3g-5a) in his last 12 outings. The Madison, Wis., native is fourth in team scoring (6g-10a-16pts) and second shots (77).
Viktor Stalberg has four points (2g-2a) in his last six games after posting a multi-point game (1g-1a) on Saturday night vs. San Jose.

TEAM QUICK HITS
• The Predators are 3-0-0 in road games against the Atlantic Division.
• Nashville is 16-3-2 when scoring more than one goal, and 14-0-1 when scoring three or more goals.
• Seven of Nashville’s 16 wins this season have come by one goal – it is 7-0-3 in one-goal games.
• The Predators are 13-1-2 when they score first this season.
• The Preds’ penalty kill ranks 10th in the League (83.9 percent), and has allowed the eighth-fewest power-play goals (18). Nashville’s road penalty kill ranks among the League’s best (eighth; 85.2 percent). Nashville’s penalty kill has allowed just five goals in its last 46 times shorthanded (in 15 games).
• The Preds have not allowed a shorthanded goal since March 21, 2013, when Calgary scored two shorthanded goals – a span of 52 games. Nashville is the only team in the League not to have allowed a shorthanded goal this season.
• Nashville ranks second in the League in team face-off win percentage this season (54.3 percent). The Preds have been better than 50 percent in the face-off circle in 28 of their 34 games.
• The Predators have had seven rookies appear in the lineup this season. They had eight rookies appear last season, and 11 during the 2011-12 campaign. Nashville is also one of two teams in the NHL to field multiple teenagers in its lineup (Filip Forsberg, 19 and Seth Jones, 19), only Buffalo has had more teenagers on its roster this season (four).

LAST TIME OUT: Nashville 1, Chicago 3 at Bridgestone Arena
• With Shea Weber’s first-period power-play goal, the Preds have scored four power-play goals in their last three games. After going one-for-seven, the Nashville power play remains among the League’s best (ninth, 19.6 percent).
• The loss was Nashville’s first in regulation when scoring a power-play goal (13-1-1).
• Nashville’s 17 first-period shots were a season high for the team in the opening 20 minutes, and tied for the second-highest in any period by the Predators this season (19; third period, Oct. 31 at Phoenix).
• Half of Nashville's 28 shots came on its seven power play opportunities.
Mike Fisher led all skaters with a season-high seven shots. Five of Fisher’s seven shots came in the first period, tying the single period high. That total was just two off his career-high nine shots last posted on Dec. 8, 2008 against Florida. It also tied for most by a Predator this season.
Carter Hutton, who celebrates his 28th birthday on Thursday, turned aside 24-of-27 shots. He is now 7-4-1 with a 2.79 goals-against average and a .911 save percentage in 15 appearances.
• Nashville won the face-off battle by a margin of 34-19 (64 percent). Paul Gaustad led the team after going nine-for-11 on the dot (82 percent). David Legwand (72 percent) and Matt Cullen (67 percent) were also better than 60 percent in the circle.
• The combined 12 special teams opportunities matched the season high for a Preds game. Nashville came into the game averaging 10.7 penalty minutes per game (11th), while Chicago had averaged 9.1 penalty minutes per game (fifth).
• Nashville allowed multiple power-play goals for the first time since Oct. 26 in 6-1 loss against St. Louis.

15TH ANNIVERSARY MOMENT
December 19, 1998: Bordeleau and Krivo record four-point games in Vancouver

Thirty games into franchise history, Sebastien Bordeleau and Sergei Krivokrasov each hit a scoring milestone that has been surpassed by only two Predators in the 15 years since. In a 6-4 win over the Vancouver Canucks at GM Place, the pair notched four-point efforts, both registering two goals and two assists.

Nashville entered the game with just three power-play goals in 55 chances on the road that season, but converted three of four chances with the man-advantage that night. “Krivo” had one of the three, while Andrew Brunette and Denny Lambert pitched in the other two. The trio of power-play goals helped Nashville storm back from a 3-1 deficit..

"A great win and a great comeback," Krivokrasov said. "Tonight was very important for us because it gives us some confidence – something we've been lacking recently. We battled hard and we got the result we needed."

Both of Bordeleau’s tallies came in the third frame, including the eventual game-winner at 3:26, to cap off the historic evening.

2013-2014 season series
DateScoreW. Goal
Feb 27 '14TBL 2 at NSH 3P. Hornqvist
Dec 19 '13NSH 2 at TBL 4T. Purcell
PlayerGPGAP+/-PIMPPGW
D. Legwand3561925-111632
C. Smith3281018-11232
S. Weber3281018-92261
P. Hornqvist3271017-21633
M. Cullen3551015-11601
C. Wilson3451015-1821
M. Fisher287512-22710
G. Bourque304812-9401
N. Spaling315611+2400
R. Josi252911-131210
V. Stalberg294610-81801
S. Jones353710-10821
R. Ellis33189+41401
E. Nystrom32628-62601
P. Gaustad35527-51800
F. Forsberg12145-8210
M. Ekholm21044-6000
M. Hendricks31213-34200
R. Clune22112-67401
V. Bartley29022+11200
K. Klein33011-91400
J. Piskula2000+1000
T. Beck2000-1200
GoalieGPRec.GASAGAASv%
C. Hutton167-5-1394072.98.904
M. Mazanec155-7-1334092.44.919
P. Rinne94-4-1192292.31.917
M. Hellberg10-0-0145.00.750
PlayerGPGAP+/-PIMPPGW
M. St. Louis35141933+7433
V. Filppula35121224+1830
S. Stamkos1714923+11832
A. Killorn3581119+62611
T. Johnson3581018+31222
T. Purcell3581018-1233
V. Hedman2961016-12312
M. Carle3511213+71010
O. Palat355712+51201
R. Panik302911-51500
R. Malone23369+13500
N. Thompson35347+51700
S. Salo32167+41000
R. Gudas30167+27610
E. Brewer33077+42300
A. Sustr28077+41000
J. Brown18246-1000
B. Crombeen31044+25100
N. Kucherov12303+5411
M. Barberio20022+51400
B. Connolly11101-5401
J. Cote1011+0000
P. Labrie13000-42000
D. Tyrell7000+0400
M. Taormina7000+0000
K. Aulie6000-3400
T. Pyatt1000+0000
D. Korobov1000+0000
GoalieGPRec.GASAGAASv%
B. Bishop2618-5-2507551.96.934
A. Lindback113-6-1302703.01.889

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