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Morning Skate Report: Dec. 15

by Jena Smith / Nashville Predators
After beating division rival Columbus last night, the Preds coaches gave the players the morning off in preparation for tonight’s match-up against Eastern Conference foe Tampa Bay.

Head Coach Barry Trotz simply stated that he felt his men were mature enough to handle a back-to-back and a little rest would do them well. “We are going to do our meetings a little later today, we usually do them after morning skate but with no morning skate we are just going to do out meetings a little earlier (during pre-game) and go from there.”

“We just have to focus on getting it done. I think we just need to concentrate on our game. We will try to fill them in with some film and some little adjustment we need to make,” Coach added about the day’s preparations.

After four key Western Conference match ups in the last week, playing an Eastern Conference team will change the pace for Nashville. However with not knowing much about this Tampa team and preparing for an up-coming Western Conference road trip Trotz is looking for his team to keep focused.

“Well we don’t know much about Tampa Bay, we don’t really play them so we are really going to try to focus on our game. There is not a lot of emotion when you go out of the conference sometime; you don’t know much about them and they don’t know much about us, so sometimes it’s a little more generic then anything else.”

Trotz is looking for his team to avoid letting this become generic and falling into what he calls a trap game.

“Well we talked about this being kind of a trap game, we had a big win I Columbus last night and we are heading on a Western road trip so this is sort of that one game that is in between that and to me it is a little bit of a trap game, so we have to be cautions of that.”

“To me this is the one we have to make sure we get

Up From Milwaukee:
Forward Nick Spaling was recalled from Milwaukee today. This is the first recall for the 21 year old this season.

“If he plays tonight it will be at center ice probably in that fourth hole. But if we are healthy then he may not play at all,” Trotz stated this morning. “He has done a good job he is a pretty solid player on both sides of the ice; very cautious of everything around him. In that role he is probably a better fit than O’Reilly, Santorelli or those kind of guys.”

Coach did voice that there was no guarantee that Spaling would see ice time rather he was brought up just in case. “Right now we have a couple of our center men a little nicked up so it is just a precautionary measure.”

Injury Report:
Jordin Tootoo will be sidelined for the next 3-4 weeks with a broken foot. Tootoo took a shot to the foot from teammate Shea Weber early in Saturday’s game against Detroit.

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