Game #35- Nashville Predators (14-14-7) vs Chicago Blackhawks (26-5-3)
Game Time-7:30 Central
Season Series- The Blackhawks lead 1-0 with a 3-0 victory February 10th in Nashville.
Preview- The Predators and Hawks face each other three times between tonight and Sunday night and this stretch of games could decide the Predators playoff fate. The Predators are in the 10th spot and struggling to score goals which has never been their strong suit, but goalie Pekka Rinne has not been his usual spectacular self this season. The defense hasn’t been the same either with the departure of Ryan Suter to the Minnesota Wild, and it’s really bad when you are looking up at the Columbus Blue Jackets from the basement of the standings of the Central Division. The good news for Nashville is Rinne played good against the Avalanche only to lose in 1-0 in a shoot-out. The Predators are 0-12 on the powerplay in the last 3 games so their fans are in the same boat as Hawks fans watching their team struggle with the man advantage.
The Hawks rebounded about as well as you could ask for after the disappointing defeat to the Ducks on Friday night as they responded with a Holiday beat down of the Red Wings. Everyone contributed but it was good to see Jeremy Morin jump into the scoring column right away. Brandon Saad had a monster game, but the best part of the game was how Dave Bolland responded from an awful outing against the Ducks with a gift goal and a short-handed goal. Marian Hossa and Patrick Sharp get another night off so it will be up to Patrick Kane, Jonathan Toews, and the kids to get the job done against the Predators at the United Center.
Prediction- This will be a sluggish boring game unless the Hawks can jump on the Predators like they did the Red Wings yesterday. The Hawks will win this 3-1 but it won’t be pretty.
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