Originally written February 27, 2013 on Fang Faction:
The Nashville Predators start a three game west coast road trip in Anaheim to take on the Ducks. This meeting will be the final one between these two clubs through the regular season. The Predators have a record of 9-6-5 with 23 points and ranked 4th in the Western Conference. The Ducks are 13-3-1 with 27 points and ranked 2nd in the West. Puck drops at 9:07pm CT/7:07pm PT at the Honda Center.   TV/Radio Coverage Nashville: Fox Sports Tennessee and 102.5 The Game Anaheim: Fox Sports Prime Ticket and AM 830 Season Series Date Away Home Result 1/26 NSH ANA 2-3 ANA OT 2/16 ANA NSH 3-2 ANA OT Line Up News Starting Goaltenders: Name W L OT GAA SV% #35 Pekka Rinne 8 5 4 1.90 .926 #30 Viktor Fasth 8 1 0 2.01 .924 Projected Nashville Scratches: #28 C Paul Gaustad (questionable; upper body) and #75 D Hal Gill (lower body) Projected Anaheim Scratches: #5 D Luca Sbisa and #25 W Brad Staubitz Projected Lines Nashville #74 Sergei Kostitsyn #12 Mike Fisher #10 Martin Erat #57 Gabriel Bourque #11 David Legwand #27 Patric Hornqvist #33 Colin Wilson #15 Craig Smith #24 Matt Halischuk #16 Rich Clune #13 Nick Spaling #18 Brandon Yip #6 Shea Weber #59 Roman Josi #8 Kevin Klein #7 Jon Blum #4 Ryan Ellis #22 Scott Hannan #35 Pekka Rinne #30 Chris Mason Anaheim #51 Kyle Palmieri #15 Ryan Getzlaf #10 Corey Perry #39 Matt Beleskey #9 Bobby Ryan #8 Teemu Selanne #7 Andrew Cogliano #11 Saku Koivu #34 Daniel Winnik #62 Patrick Maroon #13 Nick Bonino #65 Emerson Etem #44 Sheldon Souray #23 Francois Beauchemin #4 Cam Fowler #55 Bryan Allen #32 Toni Lydman #6 Ben Lovejoy #30 Viktor Fasth #1 Jonas Hiller Thoughts on Both Teams Predators: A trend of inconsistency continues to flow in the Nashville lineup. After being scoreless for two games, the Predators were able to score five goals and record an overtime win over the Dallas Stars, Monday night. Currently losing two of their last three games, the Preds need to step it up Wednesday and finally get their first win of the season against the Ducks. In the past two attempts against Anaheim, they won both 3-2 in overtime. Barry Trotz and the coaching staff will look at film on how to fix the mistakes in the first to games and learn and process the information to correct their play so they can finally close out a game against the Ducks. Paul Gaustad has a chance at returning Wednesday night. Gaustad should return sometime this road trip. If Gaustad isn't in the lineup in Anaheim, expect him to be dressed in San Jose. Hal Gill did not make the road trip, so he will be out at least the next three games. The three keys to winning are 1) Put shots and people to the net; 2) Shutdown Selanne, Perry, Getzlaf and Ryan; and 3) Score the first goal. Ducks: Head coach Bruce Boudreau has his team rolling in the Western Conference. Playing only three games without recording a point is an extraordinary turn around for this club after having a disappointing last season in the midst of Bobby Ryan trade talk. The Ducks have found scoring in timely places from their third and fourth lines this season. When the superstars aren't putting shots in the back of the net, it is players like Matt Beleskey and Daniel Winnik who are picking up the slack. This a sign of a good team. Goaltending has been phenomenal so far. Viktor Fasth, who has only one loss all season, and Jonas Hiller are a great one, two punch night in and night out. Arguably, this is the best goaltending tandem in the league. Anaheim Ducks' Players to Watch: Name GP G A #44 Sheldon Souray 17 4 4 #8 Teemu Selanne 17 5 11 #39 Matt Beleskey 17 3 2 Who scores the first goal of the game for Predators? Win a Preds player t-shirt, info here.
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