The Nashville Predators continue their four-game home stand tonight when the Ottawa Senators come to town for a Tuesday night tilt at Bridgestone Arena.
The Preds fell 3-2 in a shootout to Carolina on Saturday night, but they've collected points in three-straight contests and four of their last five. They haven't started the way they would've liked, but Nashville knows the season is still young and their potential is high.
"We just have to be in our game plan and play Predators hockey for 60 minutes, and I think we'll be happy with the results," defenseman Yannick Weber said. "Every game is new, and we know what we have to do. We weren't happy with the last two games. We had a lead, but we didn't play our game over 60 minutes. I think tomorrow gives us the opportunity to show the staff and the organization, as players, we can do that, and we're capable of winning those games."
Filip Forsberg leads the Preds in points this season with seven, all of them assists. Ryan Johansen, P.K. Subban, Roman Josi, Mike Ribeiro and Viktor Arvidsson are all tied for second with six points; Craig Smith is the team leader in goals with five. Pekka Rinne is 2-4-3 overall and carries a .939 save percentage in his last three starts.
Ottawa is 7-4-0 to start the season, most recently falling 2-1 in Buffalo on Saturday night. Erik Karlsson leads the Sens with 10 points (3g-7a) through 10 games. Kyle Turris has five goals and seven points; Ryan Dzingel and Mike Hoffman also have seven points apiece. Netminder Craig Anderson is 6-2-0 with a .930 save percentage in eight starts.
Video: The Preds web team previews tonight's game
The Preds recalled goaltender Juuse Saros and forward Pontus Aberg from Milwaukee of the AHL and assigned goaltender Marek Mazanec and forward Kevin Fiala to the Admirals earlier this morning. Captain Mike Fisher (upper-body, day-to-day) took part in the team's optional morning skate. Fisher has missed the last two games due to injury. No line rushes were seen during the optional skate.
As the Preds look to keep their point streak going, here are three things to watch for:
Practice Like You Play:
Video: Peter Laviolette discusses his team's roster moves
After a day off on Sunday, the Preds held a lively, up-tempo session on Monday, a good sign for a team looking to find consistency through the early stages of the season. But what will that mean for tonight's game?
"It was a good practice, but we need to translate it into the game," Head Coach Peter Laviolette said. "We'll see [tonight]. We need to translate it to the game. We need to play with some attitude, some consistency, but I thought it was a good practice, good day."
Look to see if the Predators come out tonight with high energy, and then sustain it throughout the evening.
No Less Than 60:
Video: Sissons, Aberg and Subban on tonight's game
It's been said before, but Nashville continues to be unhappy with their ability to string together a consistent, 60-minute effort in their game. The point was stressed again after Monday's practice with the belief that the sooner they're able to do so, the more they'll start slotting into the win column.
"I know we keep repeating the same thing, but playing a full 60 minutes," goaltender Pekka Rinne said. "We've been inconsistent, even inside of the game, playing a good period here, but then we have a period off during the game and it ends up costing us, so we have to get rid of that. I know it's still early on in the season, but we have to start winning games. It doesn't matter how it comes, we just have to find a way."
Despite a 2-1-0 record in the month of November, the Senators have only scored four goals in their last three games, but they've been stingy on defense as well. Nashville has been generating more scoring opportunities as of late, and if they're able to get a couple by the Ottawa netminder, it could be the difference against a team that isn't producing or allowing much on both sides of the puck.
"We just have to stick with it," center Ryan Johansen said. "There's no panic in here or anything like that, and we feel like we're close to where we want to be. We're just trying to polish our game up."
When You Go:
Every Tuesday in Smashville is a Guaranteed Win Night. Each fan attending the game at Bridgestone Arena will receive a scratch-off ticket revealing a prize, with one grand prize mixed in. It's also a Team Smashville Night, with Union University as the featured school.
Have leftover Halloween candy? The Preds Foundation is hosting a candy drive tonight benefitting Treats for Troops. You can bring your candy to the Fan Information Center or the Preds Foundation area on the main concourse.
Be on the lookout for a special, historic presentation during the first period of tonight's game as well. Doors open at 5:30 for the 7 p.m. start.
Take It In:
Tonight's game against the Senators begins at 7 p.m. (CT) on Fox Sports Tennessee, with the Predators Live! pregame show kicking off at 6:30 with Willy Daunic, Stu Grimson and Lyndsay Rowley. Pete Weber and Chris Mason call the action on 102.5 The Game and the Predators Radio Network.