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game preview

Predators at Blues preview

Backup Hutton starts for St. Louis; Nashville goes for ninth win in 10 games

by Louie Korac / NHL.com Correspondent

PREDATORS (13-6-2) at BLUES (16-5-1)

8 p.m. ET; FS-MW, FS-TN, TVA Sports, NHL.TV

 

The Game

The St. Louis Blues host the Nashville Predators at Scottrade Center on Friday for the first time since Nashville defeated St. Louis in six games in the Western Conference Second Round last season.

The Predators have won four in a row and eight of nine and are five points behind the Blues, who have won three in a row and 10 of 13, for first place in the Central Division.

Carter Hutton, who spent three seasons with the Predators from 2013-16, will start for the Blues. He's 4-0-0 with a 1.73 goals-against average and a .943 save percentage.

 
Players to watch

Predators left wing Filip Forsberg is on a six-game point streak (three goals, six assists) and has 18 points (nine goals, nine assists) in 16 games against St. Louis.

Blues center Brayden Schenn is on a career-high eight-game point streak (seven goals, 12 assists); he has two four-point games during the streak, something he had never accomplished in 447 NHL games prior.

 

They said it

"Right now, they're the tops in the West and one of the top teams in the National Hockey League, so it's a great challenge for us coming in here. It should be a good game." -- Predators coach Peter Laviolette

"I look at [Friday], it's going to be a really good test. They're 8-1 their last nine games. I think they're feeling really good after the trade that they've made [for center Kyle Turris]." -- Blues coach Mike Yeo

 

Predators projected lineup

Filip Forsberg -- Ryan Johansen -- Viktor Arvidsson

Kevin Fiala -- Kyle Turris -- Craig Smith

Pontus Aberg -- Nick Bonino -- Calle Jarnkrok

Miikka Salomaki -- Colton Sissons -- Austin Watson

Roman Josi -- Mattias Ekholm

Alexei Emelin -- P.K. Subban

Matt Irwin -- Anthony Bitetto

Pekka Rinne

Juuse Saros

Scratched: Cody McLeod, Frederick Gaudreau

Injured: Ryan Ellis (knee), Scott Hartnell (lower body), Yannick Weber (lower body)

 

Blues projected lineup

Vladimir Sobotka -- Paul Stastny -- Alexander Steen

Jaden Schwartz -- Brayden Schenn -- Vladimir Tarasenko

Dmitrij Jaskin -- Oskar Sundqvist -- Magnus Paajarvi

Scottie Upshall -- Kyle Brodziak -- Chris Thorburn

Joel Edmundson -- Alex Pietrangelo

Jay Bouwmeester -- Colton Parayko

Vince Dunn -- Robert Bortuzzo

Carter Hutton

Jake Allen

Scratched: Carl Gunnarsson, Nate Prosser, Sammy Blais

Injured: Patrik Berglund (shoulder), Zach Sanford (shoulder)

 

Status report

Watson will return after serving a two-game suspension. ... Blais was recalled from San Antonio of the American Hockey League and could play. ... Allen will start against the Minnesota Wild on Saturday.

 

Stat pack

Since Oct. 25, Schwartz, Schenn and Tarasenko have combined for 54 points (18 goals, 36 assists) in 13 games. ... Arvidsson has five points (two goals, three assists) in his past four games. ... Fiala has six points (two goals, four assists) in his past five games. ... Turris has five points in six games since being acquired from the Ottawa Senators on Nov. 5. ... Schwartz has nine points (two goals, seven assists) during a five-game point streak. Tarasenko has 12 points (six goals, six assists) in his past eight games

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