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At the Rink blog

Lindback starts as Predators give Rinne a break

Tuesday, 04.03.2012 / 2:12 PM

By John Manasso - NHL.com Correspondent / At the Rink blog

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At the Rink blog
Lindback starts as Predators give Rinne a break
NASHVILLE -- Goalie Anders Lindback will play on Tuesday for the first time in two weeks for the Predators, which, by Lindback's standards, is not so long.
 
Nashville is gearing up for the playoffs and intends to get some rest for No. 1 Pekka Rinne. With three games remaining, Rinne, the League's leader in wins, has played in 71 games. Lindback, by contrast, has made 14 appearances.
 
The last time Lindack played was in relief of Rinne, giving him playing time in two straight games (March 18 and 20). Not bad, considering that Lindback played in only one game between Jan. 19 and Feb. 27.
 
That was not the plan for Rinne coming into the season, Predators coach Barry Trotz said.
 
"No, I think going into it, I looked at it as more of a 65, probably, as a number going into the season," Trotz said. "He's probably best around that number. So it's a little higher…. I think we went into a little bit of a roll right before the All-Star break. We knew the teams in the West are so close and we wanted to get some separation. We rode him hard into the All-Star break."
 
Trotz said that the Preds have been careful of Rinne's rest and recovery time since the All-Star break. To that end, on Tuesday Nashville recalled goalie Chet Pickard, a first-round pick in 2008, from Cincinnati (ECHL), whose season has ended.
 
Trotz said that in trying to take some shots off of Rinne, at times they will shorten his practices and will need Pickard for practice. Rinne did not participate in the team's morning skate and Trotz said that if he did not back up on Tuesday, then Pickard would.
 
For his part, Lindback, 23, was looking forward to the start. He said watching has been helpful in his development process.
 
"You pick up a lot of things, too, watching Pekka play," he said. "Tendencies every team's got. You try to pick it up and put it all together."
 
He was asked what in particular he has learned from watching Rinne.
 
"Just the way he handles the puck around the net and uses his glove," he said. "He prevents so many rebounds. He saves us a lot of shots. Really helps out for the (defensemen)…. It's fun to watch him play and really educational."
 
Projected lineup:
 
Sergei Kostitsyn - Mike Fisher - Martin Erat
Andrei Kostitsyn - David Legwand - Alexander Radulov
Gabriel Bourque - Nick Spaling - Patric Hornqvist
Matt Halischuk - Paul Gaustad - Brandon Yip
 
Ryan Suter - Shea Weber
Hal Gill - Roman Josi
Francis Bouillon - Kevin Klein
 
Anders Lindback
Chet Pickard/Pekka Rinne
Quote of the Day

I came into a team that had 65 points, that was at the bottom of the basement, a team that everybody wrote off as never going to be good. My goal is to go from the very bottom to the very top.

— Forward Brandon Dubinsky on signing a six-year contract extension with the Columbus Blue Jackets