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Kings begin lengthy home stand today against Nashville

by Alex Kinkopf / Los Angeles Kings



PREDATORS (24-9-3) at KINGS (19-12-8)

1:00PM PT, TV: FOX SPORTS WEST; RADIO: AM 790 KABC

PREDS UNDER THE SUN: Today marks the second of three meetings with the Nashville Predators this season, and the first of two at STAPLES Center. The Predators come into town boasting a 5-1-1 record in their past seven games; most recent a 3-2 win over the St. Louis Blues Tuesday night. The Kings begin a seven-game home stand today; they have lost just once in regulation at STAPLES Center in their past seven home games (4-1-2).

KNOWING NASHVILLE: The Predators, who are beginning a two-game road trip through Southern California today, are 5-1-1 in their past seven games. Nashville comes into the night with the NHL’s second-best defense, allowing just 2.11 goals per game. The Predators have handled the Western Conference (17-5-2) and the Pacific Division (7-2-1) quite handily this season. Nashville has done well for themselves on the road this season as well, posting a 10-7-2 record away from Bridgestone Arena.

LINEUP PROJECTIONS: Due to the 1:00PM start, the Kings did not hold a morning skate. Jordan Nolan, Andy Andreoff, and Brayden McNabb took to STAPLES Center ice this morning to run through drills with assistant coaches, so expect those three to be healthy scratches. Expect Jonathan Quick to make his 32nd start of the season.

GABORIK – KOPITAR – WILLIAMS
PEARSON – CARTER – TOFFOLI
BROWN – STOLL – LEWIS
CLIFFORD – RICHARDS – KING
(NOLAN – ANDREOFF)
-------------------------------
MUZZIN – DOUGHTY
MARTINEZ – GREENE
SCHULTZ – MCBAIN
(MCNABB)

MATINEE MAGIC: The Kings have played five afternoon games so far this season at STAPLES Center. The Kings are 4-1-0 in day games on home ice, their only loss coming to the Philadelphia Flyers on December 6. Today marks the sixth of eight afternoon games the Kings will play at STAPLES Center this season. The Kings went 3-1-0 in afternoon games on home ice last season.

THE LAST TIME AROUND: In the Predators’ previous visit to STAPLES Center on November 2 of last season, the Kings fell 4-3. Anze Kopitar, Dustin Brown, and Mike Richards all scored, and Jonathan Quick made 13 saves. The Kings are 3-1-1 against Nashville at STAPLES Center dating back to the start of the 2011-’12 campaign.

RICK ON THE ATTACK

WE’RE DOING IT LIVE: Catch KINGS LIVE at 12:30PM PT on FOX SPORTS WEST, followed with Bob and Jim on the live play-by-play call from STAPLES Center for puck drop at 1:00PM PT.

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