Originally posted on Inside Smashville  |  Last updated 11/27/11
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Season Records

Nashville Predators 10-8-4

Edmonton Oilers 12-9-2

Can the Predators stop Jordan Eberle?

On Monday night, the Predators play game one of another set of back-to-back games, the second set in less than a week for Nashville. The Predators visit the Edmonton Oilers and will be trying to forget not only Saturday night’s 4-1 loss to the Detroit Red Wings, but their entire last week of play.

The Predators have already played the Edmonton Oilers twice this season and were easily beaten both times. Last Tuesday, the Predators lost to the Oilers 6-2 at Bridgestone Arena. Both Predator goaltenders, Pekka Rinne and Anders Lindback allowed three goals each.  On October 17th, the Predators put up only 12 shots on goal and were beat 3-1 by the Oilers.

Despite the losses, traditionally, the Predators have actually played well against the Oilers. Since 2006-07, Nashville is 16-5-1 against Edmonton, with an average of 3.36 goals per game.

Rinne has a 7-4-1 record against Edmonton. However, given that the Predators are playing in Calgary on Tuesday night, Lindback may be given the start.

The Oilers aren’t Nashville’s only problem. The Predators have lost four straight games, starting with an overtime loss to Columbus, the last game in a stretch of 11 where the Predators collected points in all but one contest. Nashville is having a hard time finding the back of the net, scoring 8 goals in 4 games while allowing 16 during the same four-game span.

Roman Josi was recalled on Friday, making his NHL debut on Saturday at Detroit when the Predators decided to dress seven defensemen. Frankie Bouillon left the game with a lower body injury. The Tennessean reported that the defenseman has since returned to Nashville, meaning Josi will see regular action Monday night.

Nashville’s penalty kill, usually a strong point for the team, has faltered as of late, while the power play starts to surge. Still ranked 12th in the League, Nashville has a 83.5 percent penalty kill off rate, but in the last five games the Predators have allowed 7 power play goals on 19 chances — or a 63 percent kill off rate.

While the penalty kill has not been strong recently, the Predators have scored four power-play goals in the last four games. Nashville ranks 18th in the League with a power play success rate of 15.8 percent.

Andy Sutton, Cam Barker and Corey Potter are all out of the lineup for Edmonton, all on defense. Now, the Oilers lost one of their more dynamic forwards. Taylor Hall was injured on Saturday night against the Avalanche. It is unclear how bad the injury is but Hall injured his left shoulder after sustaining a couple hard hits.

After Monday night’s contest, the Predators play Calgary on Tuesday and travel to Vancouver for a game against the Canucks on Thursday before returning to Bridgestone Arena.

 

Photo credit: Getty Images

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