Originally written on Inside Smashville  |  Last updated 12/3/11

The Nashville Predators return home after a five-game road trip where they went 2-3-0. The Predators, who are coming off of a wild 6-5 win in Vancouver on Thursday night, host the Buffalo Sabres. On Thursday, Nashville scored more goals against the Canucks on Thursday night than their previous four games combined. The Sabres last played on Tuesday night when they were edged by the New York Islanders by a 2-1 score.

Buffalo is in 7th spot in the Eastern Conference, while Nashville sits a point out of 8th spot in the West. While Nashville looks to continue its December schedule on a winning note, Buffalo are losers of two straight games and have gone 4-5-1 in the last 10 outings.

Nashville’s special teams continue to improve. The Predators have scored eight power-play goals in the last seven games, including a perfect 3-for-3 night against Vancouver. Usually in the lower third of the league for power play success rate, so far this season Nashville ranks in the top 10% with a success rate of 18.5 per cent.

Ever since the Predators overtime loss to Columbus on November 19th, 8 of Nashville’s 16 goals have been scored on the man advantage.

Of course, while the power play continues to click, the Predators penalty kill finds itself uncharacteristically outside of the top 10 per cent of the NHL at 83 percent kill off rate.

The Sabres last trip to the Nashville saw the Sabres beat the Predators 1-0 on October 10, 2009. The Predators hold a 7-5-2 record against Buffalo but suffer on home ice posting only a 2-4-1 record.

The game on Saturday marks the start of a homestand by the Predators where 7 of the next 9 games are at Bridgestone Arena.

 

Photo credit: Getty Images

 

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