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Game Day: Preds vs. Stars

by Nashville Predators / Nashville Predators

(7-3-2) Nashville Predators vs. Dallas Stars (4-4-4)
  7:30 P.M. | American Airlines Center
TV: FS-TN | Radio: 102.5 The Game

The Nashville Predators are looking to get back in the win column tonight as they take on the Dallas Stars from the American Airlines Center in Dallas, in what will be the second of five meetings between the two clubs this season. The Predators took the season's first get together, besting Dallas 4-1 in Music City.

This evening's contest is the fifth installment of Nashville's current six-game, 12-day road trip, a span in which the Preds have gone 2-2-0 thus far. The Predators fell 3-1 to Winnipeg in their most recent outing.

On the other side of the red line, Nashville is looking to take advantage of a Stars team that has lost five in a row in regulation or overtime, and has not earned a three-period victory since Oct. 21. The home team has been successful as of late when these two get together, with Dallas victorious in each of Nashville's last three visits to the Lone Star State. However, the Stars are just 1-1-4 this season at home.

Filip Forsberg tallied the Preds lone marker in their loss to the Jets on Tuesday night, upping his season total to four goals and 12 points. The Swede continues to lead all NHL rookies in assists (8), points (12) and plus/minus (+14). Forsberg's +14 is also good enough to sit atop all NHL players in the category.

Former Stars and current Preds forward Mike Ribeiro continues to add points on the current roadtrip, as he is currently riding a four-game point streak. Ribeiro is the only Nashville skater to register at least one point in every road game (1g-5a-6pts), leading the team in road points. Now in his 15th season, Ribeiro spent six seasons in Dallas from 2006-12, appearing in 461 games and tallying 407 points (123g-284a).

Current Preds forwards James Neal, Derek Roy and Eric Nystrom have also skated in a Stars sweater at some point during their careers. Fittingly, Nystrom is scheduled to play in his 500th career game tonight in Dallas.

Tonight's contest is the first of two Nashville visits to Dallas this season. The Predators are 26-31-(1)-2 all-time against the Stars.



Predators Morning Skate Lines:

Forwards:


Forsberg - Ribeiro - Neal

Cullen - Roy - Smith

Wilson - Jarnkrok - Jokinen

Nystrom - Gaustad - Beck

Defensemen:

Josi - Weber

Bartley - Jones

Ekholm - Ellis

Goaltenders:

Rinne*

Hutton


Stars projected lines: (via Mark Stepneski)


Forwards:

Ja. Benn - Seguin - Nichushkin

Cole - Spezza - Hemsky

Roussel - Eakin - Garbutt

Horcoff - Fiddler - Sceviour

Defensemen:

Goligoski - Daley

Jo. Benn - Dillon

Oleksiak - Gonchar

Goaltenders:

Lehtonen*

Lindback

*Expected Starter
Quotables:

Seth Jones on playing in his home state of Texas:


"I'll have some family at the game tonight. I've lived here for about six or seven years now and I definitely have friends here still. It's fun coming back here but it's going to be like any other game here really."

Eric Nystrom on playing in his 500th career game tonight:

"It's obviously a nice milestone, but I'm not one that really looks at milestones too often. It'll be nice to come out of Game 500 with a win tonight. That's what I'm looking forward to. It's nice to be against my old team. It's kind of a good situation how that worked out, but it'll feel a lot better after a win."
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