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Predators at Senators preview

Nashville coach Laviolette can climb NHL all-time wins list; Hogberg to start for Ottawa

by Callum Fraser / Independent Correspondent

PREDATORS (16-12-5) at SENATORS (14-18-3)

7:30 p.m. ET; ESPN+, RDS2, TSN5, FS-TN, NHL.TV


The Game

Peter Laviolette can move into sole possession of 16th place on the NHL all-time list for coaching victories when the Nashville Predators visit the Ottawa Senators at Canadian Tire Centre on Thursday.

Laviolette, in his sixth season with the Predators and 18th as an NHL coach, has 634 wins, tied with Darryl Sutter.

Nashville eyes its third straight victory and fifth in seven games (4-2-0). Goalie Juuse Saros will start; he's 5-7-2 with a 2.97 goals-against average and .899 save percentage in 17 games (14 starts) this season.

The Senators are 3-2-2 in their past seven games following a five-game losing streak. Goalie Anders Nilsson won't play because of illness; Marcus Hogberg will start, and the Senators called up Filip Gustavsson from Belleville of the American Hockey League on an emergency basis to serve as his backup.


Players to watch

Predators center Kyle Turris needs one point for 400 in the NHL.

Senators forward Anthony Duclair has 11 points (nine goals, two assists) in his past eight games.


They said it

"When you go on a road trip like this, certainly, you can dig yourself into a hole and at the end of it, look up and be like, 'What just happened?' Even with our success on this road trip, after Christmas there's still going to be a lot of hockey left, and we've got to play well for the entire year." -- Predators coach Peter Laviolette on Nashville playing the third of a four-game trip

"For whatever reason, our home record is significantly better than our road record and we've got to carry that energy and that momentum through here. A goal of ours at the beginning of the year was to make this a tough rink to come into. [Coach] D.J. [Smith] said he wanted teams to know when they've come into our rink because we're going to go out there, we're going to smack them, we're going to put pucks behind their [defensemen] and we're going to play hard." -- Senators defenseman Mark Borowiecki


Predators projected lineup

Yakov Trenin -- Ryan Johansen -- Mikael Granlund

Filip Forsberg -- Matt Duchene -- Rocco Grimaldi

Colin Blackwell -- Kyle Turris -- Craig Smith

Colton Sissons -- Nick Bonino -- Austin Watson

Roman Josi -- Ryan Ellis

Mattias Ekholm -- Dante Fabbro

Dan Hamhuis -- Yannick Weber

Juuse Saros

Pekka Rinne

Scratched: Matt Irwin, Calle Jarnkrok

Injured: Viktor Arvidsson (lower body)


Senators projected lineup

Brady Tkachuk -- Jean-Gabriel Pageau -- Connor Brown

Vladislav Namestnikov -- Artem Anisimov -- Tyler Ennis

Nick Paul -- Chris Tierney -- Anthony Duclair

Logan Brown -- J.C. Beaudin -- Colin White

Thomas Chabot -- Ron Hainsey

Mark Borowiecki -- Erik Brannstrom

Andreas Englund -- Cody Goloubef

Marcus Hogberg

Filip Gustavsson

Scratched: Mikkel Boedker

Injured: Scott Sabourin (nose), Craig Anderson (knee), Dylan DeMelo (finger), Nikita Zaitsev (undisclosed), Anders Nilsson (illness)


Status report

Granlund could return after missing three games with a lower-body injury. … Arvidsson took part in the morning skate but will not play. … Anderson and Sabourin each is close to returning, Smith said. … Zaitsev will be out 2-4 weeks.


Stat pack

Johansen has 14 points (one goal, 13 assists) in 15 games against Ottawa. … Josi has 12 points (four goals, eight assists) in 13 games against the Senators. … Ottawa is 9-5-0 at home this season.

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