Nashville Predators 32-18-5
Boston Bruins 33-17-2
Predators goaltender Pekka Rinne will look to bounce back Saturday afternoon at TD Garden
The Nashville Predators will try to halt a two-game losing streak on Saturday afternoon when they visit the Stanley Cup champion Boston Bruins. Both Boston and Nashville are coming off losses. The Predators were edged 4-3 by the Ottawa Senators on Thursday night. Buffalo shutout the Bruins 6-0 Wednesday.
The Predators gave up two power play goals on Thursday night in Ottawa and will look to tighten up the penalty kill. Nashville ranks 19th in the League on the penalty kill with an 81.6 percent kill of rate. Boston ranks 7th in the League on the penalty kill with an 85.4 percent kill off rate.
Nashville will look to stay out of the box Saturday afternoon in Boston. Nashville averages only 9.4 minutes shorthanded per game, but with six minor penalties taken on Thursday, the Predators will need to play a little more disciplined facing the 10th best power play in the League at 18.6 percent success rate.
Boston is the most penalized team in the League with an average of over 16 minutes in penalties per game. While the Boston penalty kill is impressive, so is Nashville’s power play. Third best in the League, Nashville connects with the man advantage 21.6 percent of the time, behind only Vancouver and Edmonton.
Rinne has played two games against the Bruins, both wins with a 2.34 goals against average and a .921 save percentage. Tim Thomas is also 2-0-0 against the Predators with a 1.50 goals against average and a .956 save percentage. If the two star goaltenders go head-to-head for the first time, hockey fans around the NHL are in for a goaltending treat.
Saturday’s game starts at 12 pm Central Time and is the third time this season the Predators play a matinee. On October 22nd, Nashville shutout Calgary by a 2-0 score and most recently downed the New York Islanders, 3-1 on January 16. Since the start of the 2003-04 season, Nashville has an impressive 22-7-7 record in matinees.
Photo credit: AP