A season-defining weekend set of games starts in the early afternoon (1 p.m. CT) on Saturday for the Nashville Predators.
The Preds (39-27-11) will host the Minnesota Wild, a potential playoff opponent, before traveling to St. Louis to face the Blues, who are battling with Nashville for third place in the Central Division, on Sunday. Nashville has lost two in a row after winning four straight and is trying to reduce their magic number down from three, as they inch closer to clinching a playoff spot.
Minnesota (45-24-8) only won four games in March, but picked up a 5-1 victory over the Ottawa Senators on Thursday, and sit comfortably in the No. 2 slot in the Central. The Wild and Preds have each hosted two games in the season series, with Minnesota winning three of them.
The Predators held an optional practice on Friday, with players likely to be scratched on Saturday taking part. Craig Smith (day-to-day; upper-body injury) was among the participants. James Neal, who left Thursday's game early, did not skate. Yannick Weber (day-to-day; upper-body injury) remains out.
Below is a look at Nashville's projected lineup:
Filip Forsberg - Ryan Johansen - Viktor Arvidsson
Colin Wilson - Mike Fisher - PA Parenteau
Kevin Fiala - Calle Jarnkrok - James Neal
Cody McLeod - Colton Sissons - Austin Watson
Roman Josi - Ryan Ellis
Mattias Ekholm - P.K. Subban
Anthony Bitetto - Matt Irwin
Note: The Predators have not announced a starting goaltender for today's game