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Predators-Canucks Preview

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Whatever it was that ailed the Nashville Predators at the start of this season appears to have been corrected.

Surging Nashville seeks its fifth straight road win and a small measure of revenge as it continues a five-game trip against the Vancouver Canucks on Tuesday.

One of the league's top teams last season with 106 points, the Predators (6-3-1) stumbled out of the gate in 2006-07, allowing 17 goals during a season-opening three-game losing streak.

Since then, however, Nashville has been nearly unbeatable, recording points in seven straight games (6-0-1), a stretch that includes four consecutive road wins.

The only blemish in that span was a 4-3 overtime loss to Vancouver on Oct. 21, when the Predators allowed the tying goal with 1:40 left in regulation. Defenseman Lukas Krajicek scored 2:32 into overtime to lift the Canucks.

Nashville responded with a 4-3 win over San Jose on Thursday before opening its road trip with a 3-2 victory over Calgary on Saturday.

"We started this season not the way we wanted, but we're improving every game," said Jason Arnott, who had two goals and scored the eventual game-winner in the third period Saturday. "We're a young team, we're still learning, and good things will happen for us down the road if we continue playing hard."

The Predators received a boost Saturday from speedy right wing Steve Sullivan, who had an assist in his first game back after missing three in a row with back spasms.

Left wing Martin Erat has been a key contributor recently for Nashville with two goals and five assists during a five-game point streak.

Vancouver (7-4-1) also enters this contest playing well, winning two straight and four of five.

The Canucks, who have played a league-low three home games, received shootout goals from captain Markus Naslund and Brendan Morrison in a 3-2 victory over visiting Washington on Friday.

Although it needed a shootout to get two points, Vancouver was by far the more dominant team, outshooting the Capitals 16-1 in the first period and 15-2 in the third.

"It was good to get the win but it took too long in my opinion," Naslund said.

While the Canucks have received expected offense from Naslund as well as Henrik and Daniel Sedin, left wing Taylor Pyatt has been a pleasant surprise with four goals in five games since moving to a line with the Sedins. Pyatt already has matched his goal total from 41 games with Buffalo last season.

An unsettled goaltending situation troubled the Canucks in recent years, but Roberto Luongo has done more than stabilize that position in his first month with the team. Luongo, acquired in a five-player trade with Florida on June 24, has allowed two goals or fewer in eight of 11 games, posting a 2.06 goals-against average.

Vancouver had lost three in a row to Nashville before winning the first meeting this season. Naslund has 12 goals and 17 assists in 29 career games against the Predators.

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