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Game Preview: Pens-Preds

by Sam Kasan @PensInsideScoop / Pittsburgh Penguins

The Penguins host the Nashville Predators as they kick off the post-All-Star break. 

MATCH: Penguins vs. Predators

TIME: 7 p.m. EST

PLACE: PPG Paints Arena

TV: ROOT Sports

RADIO: 105.9 FM, the X

WHAT TO WATCH FOR:

The Pens finish off the month of January with a showdown against Nashville … Pittsburgh lost the previous matchup, 5-1, in Nashville on Oct. 22. Still, Pittsburgh is 7-2 in its last 9 against Nashville … The Pens are hoping to improve upon the NHL's best home record, which stands at 20-3-2 … Sidney Crosby is 7 points shy of the 1,000 career mark … Justin Schultz chipped in 2 points (1G-1A) against Boston to push his career-high point total to 35, which ranks 4th in the league among D-men. Since Nov. 25, Schultz has totaled 30 points (8G-22A) in 26 games. Meanwhile, Schultz's +27 is tied for 2nd in the NHL … The Pens power play has scored in 15 of its last 21 games (22 for 75, 29.3%) … Pittsburgh injuries: Kris Letang (lower-body, 6 games missed); Evgeni Malkin (lower-body, 1); Matt Cullen (foot, 5) … The Predators are 7-1-1 in their last 9 games, and 8-3 in their last 11 road contests … Nashville is 15-0-5 when scoring first and 17-0-4 when leading after 2 periods … Filip Forsberg has 7 points (6G-1A), including 4 game-winners, in his last 8 games … Ryan Johansen posted 6 points (1G-5A) in his past 4 contests … Nashville injuries: Roman Josi (upper-body, 7); Petter Granberg (lower-body, 6), Miikka Salomaki (lower-body, 27).

MORNING SKATE REPORT:

*The Pens held an optional morning skate. The only healthy players that did not participate were Sidney Crosby and Phil Kessel.

*Defenseman Kris Letang (lower-body) took part in the skate. He is a game-time decision to play tonight. 

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