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Preview: Flames at Predators

Defenseman Michael Stone debuts for Calgary; Nashville begins four-game homestand

by Robby Stanley / Correspondent

FLAMES (29-26-4) at PREDATORS (28-22-8)

8 p.m. ET; SN1, SNP, FS-TN, NHL.TV


Flames team scope

Defenseman Michael Stone will debut for the Calgary Flames. Stone (1-8-9 in 45 games) was acquired in a trade with the Arizona Coyotes for a third-round pick in the 2017 NHL Draft and a conditional fifth-round pick in 2018. "I just want to come in and play my game," Stone said. "Just be a stable body. Hopefully I can chip in some more offense than I have this season so far, but I feel like I've grown into a player that can play in all situations so I'm up for anything." The Flames hold the second wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Western Conference and trail the Nashville Predators by two points for the first wild card. Coach Glen Gulutzan believes Stone will give the Flames a boost in their push toward the playoffs. "It's the first time in my coaching career in this league that we've added at the deadline," Gulutzan said. "It's not like a huge shift for your team so it adds a little juice. I think most guys in our locker room would agree that there's a little bit of juice in their steps today, and they know that it's on now. We're making a push. We're sitting in a playoff spot. We'd like to continue to push and see where else we can go." 


Predators team scope

The Predators begin a four-game homestand and will attempt to move within one point of the St. Louis Blues for third place in the Central Division. "It's going to be huge, especially this game," forward Filip Forsberg said. "Especially this game. They're in the mix, and obviously we want to try and climb as high as we can and get ourselves into the division spots again. The wild card race is tough. We just want to do everything we can to make some separation." Defenseman Ryan Ellis took part in the morning skate. He left in the third period of a 4-3 win at the Columbus Blue Jackets on Sunday after blocking a shot. The Predators are 16-7-6 at Bridgestone Arena and 6-2-1 in their past nine home games. 


Flames projected lineup

Johnny Gaudreau -- Sean Monahan -- Troy Brouwer

Matthew Tkachuk -- Mikael Backlund -- Michael Frolik

Kris Versteeg -- Sam Bennett -- Alex Chiasson

Lance Bouma -- Matt Stajan -- Micheal Ferland

Mark Giordano -- Dougie Hamilton

TJ Brodie -- Deryk Engelland

Matt Bartkowski -- Michael Stone

Brian Elliott

Chad Johnson

Scratched: Freddie Hamilton, Garnet Hathaway, Jyrki Jokipakka, Dennis Wideman

Injured: None


Predators projected lineup

Filip Forsberg -- Ryan Johansen -- Viktor Arvidsson

Kevin Fiala -- Mike Fisher -- Craig Smith

Colin Wilson -- Calle Jarnkrok -- James Neal

Colton Sissons -- Vernon Fiddler -- Austin Watson

Roman Josi -- Ryan Ellis 

Mattias Ekholm -- P.K. Subban

Matt Irwin -- Yannick Weber

Pekka Rinne

Juuse Saros

Scratched: Anthony Bitetto, Brad Hunt, Harry Zolnierczyk

Injured: Cody McLeod (lower body), Miikka Salomaki (lower body)


Status report

The Flames assigned defenseman Garnet Hathaway to Stockton of the American Hockey League on Tuesday. Wideman will be a healthy scratch. … McLeod participated in the morning skate but is not expected to play.


Who's hot

Tkachuk has two goals and four assists in his past five games. … Jarnkrok has six goals and five assists in his past 11 games.

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