Originally written on Fang Faction  |  Last updated 2/19/13
The Nashville Predators and Detroit Red Wings meet for the first time since Game 5 in Western Conference Quarterfinals when the Predators eliminated the Red Wings in Nicklas Lidstrom's final game of his career. Now Detroit is without Lidstrom, a key asset to their defense, but have gained former Predator Jordin Tootoo to their lineup. Nashville has a record of 7-4-5 with 19 points and ranked 5th in the Western Conference. Detroit has a record of 7-6-2 with 16 points and ranked 9th in the West. Puck drops in this Central Division battle at 7:08PM CT/ 8:08PM ET at Bridgestone Arena. TV/Radio Coverage Nashville: Fox Sports Tennessee and 102.5 The Game Detroit: Fox Sports Detroit and AM 1270 Season Series This will be the first meeting of the season for these teams. Line Up News Starting Goaltenders: Name W L OT GAA SV% #35 Pekka Rinne 6 3 4 1.58 .938 #35 Jimmy Howard 6 5 2 2.97 .900 Projected Nashville Scratches: #18 W Brandon Yip, #23 W Brian McGrattan (conditioning assignment) and #28 C Paul Gaustad (upper-body) Projected Detroit Scratches: #3 D Kent Huskins, #17 W Patrick Eaves and #39 W Jan Mursak; #2 D Brendan Smith (IR), #28 D Carlo Colaiacovo (IR), #43 W Darren Helm (IR), #44 W Todd Bertuzzi (IR; back) and #93 W Johan Franzen (IR; sore hip flexer) Projected Lines Nashville #74 Sergei Kostitsyn #12 Mike Fisher #10 Martin Erat #57 Gabriel Bourque #11 David Legwand #27 Patric Hornqvist #24 Matt Halischuk #33 Colin Wilson #15 Craig Smith #16 Rich Clune #13 Nick Spaling   #6 Shea Weber #59 Roman Josi #7 Jonathon Blum #8 Kevin Klein #4 Ryan Ellis #22 Scott Hannan #75 Hal Gill   #35 Pekka Rinne #30 Chris Mason Detroit #51 Valtteri Filppula #40 Henrik Zetterberg #24 Damien Brunner #21 Tomas Tatar #13 Pavel Datsyuk #37 Mikael Samuelsson #11 Dan Cleary #8 Justin Abdelkader #63 Joakim Andersson #20 Drew Miller #25 Cory Emmerton #22 Jordin Tootoo #55 Nicklas Kronwall #23 Brian Lashoff #52 Jonathan Ericsson #18 Ian White #27 Kyle Quincey #4 Jakub Kindl #35 Jimmy Howard #50 Jonas Gustavsson Thoughts on Both Teams Predators: The Predators return to Nashville after losing a 6-5 back-and-forth contest to the Colorado Avalanche. Giving up six goals isn't ideal for any team, but made for quite the entertaining hockey game for the United States on Presidents' Day. Now, their eyes have to quickly shift from a terrible non-offside call in Denver to their next opponent, Detroit Red Wings. For Nashville, they lose a key asset to their penalty kill as the news was reported postgame Monday that Paul Gaustad would be out with an upper body injury. Barry Trotz will have the option to either replace Gaustad with Brandon Yip, who has been a healthy scratch the past two games, or Hal Gill to go with seven defensemen. The latter is most likely. The three keys to the game for the Predators is 1) Stay out of the box, 2) Capitalize on the power play and 3) Give Rinne support. Red Wings: Detroit is winless in their last three games and look to change that against the Predators on the road. The loss of Nick Lidstrom has taken its toll on the team's defense. The Red Wings are 20th in the NHL in goals against with almost three goals allowed per game. Not to mention the early season injuries head coach Mike Babcock is having to deal with. If all of Detroit was completely healthy, they may be the best team in the league right now, but that isn't the case currently. Defensemen Brendan Smith and Carlo Colaiacovo and forwards Darren Helm, Todd Bertuzzi and Johan Franzen are all on injured reserve. Former Nashville fan favorite Jordin Tootoo returns to Bridgestone Arena Tuesday night. Expect a mixed reaction when they hear his name. Everyone who is Preds fan is angry he signed with the Red Wings, but also remember the excellent memories he has provided. All in all, it is business and if he wasn't going to get playing time under Barry Trotz, he would have to sign somewhere else. Detroit Red Wings Players to Watch: Name GP G A #13 Pavel Datsyuk 14 7 9 #40 Henrik Zetterberg 15 5 15 #24 Damien Brunner 15 7 4  
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