Originally written on Inside Smashville  |  Last updated 4/23/12

Season Records:

Nashville Predators 2-1-1

Edmonton Oilers 1-1-1


On Monday night, the Nashville Predators will try to extend their road winning streak to 3 games when they visit Edmonton to play the Oilers. While the Predators hope to get back into the win column after two losses on home ice, two Predators will be looking to extend their hot starts to the season.

David Legwand and Sergei Kostitsyn both have picked up points in all four games that Nashville has played. Legwand extended his points total to 8 when he picked up an assist on Colin Wilson’s power play goal in the first period on Saturday night. Legwand is in a three-way tie for the NHL points lead with Toronto’s Phil Kessel and the Islanders John Tavares.

Sergei Kostitsyn is on a 4-game assist streak that he will be looking to continue.

Legwand and Kostitsyn played on the same line Saturday night with Colin Wilson. During the first two games of the season, rookie Craig Smith was on a line with Legwand and Wilson but has since seen his playing time slashed in half. Smith went from playing 14:28 against the Blues a week ago to just 7:26 in Saturday night’s loss.

In a League where games turn on special teams, Nashville’s power play is clicking at just over 30 percent of the time. The penalty kill is solid, with a kill off rate of 88.2 percent. On Saturday night Ilya Kovaluchuk scored on a 5-on-3 man advantage, cutting New Jersey’s deficit to one goal, swinging momentum in the Devils’ favor.

To beat Nashville, the Oilers will need to stay out of the box on Monday night. Edmonton leads the League in penalties taken and is averaging over 20 minutes in penalties per game in their first three starts.

The Predators have an 8-1-1 record at Rexall Place since the start of the 2006-07 season and overall during the time span are 16-3-1 against the Oilers. While Nashville is averaging 3.55 goals per game against Edmonton, the Oilers are not a team the Predators will overlook. Last season, the Predators had their hands full with Edmonton winning the season series 2-1-1, but going to a shootout twice as well as losing a 4-0 decision at home.

Players to watch for Nashville include the usual suspects of star power in captain Shea Weber, goaltender Pekka Rinne and first ever Predators draft pick, Legwand. In 40 games total against Edmonton, Legwand has 29 points total, 10 goals and 19 assists. Weber has 7 goals and 7 assists in 14 career contests against the Oilers in 19 games. Legwand and Weber have found more offensive success against the Oilers than any other non-divisional opponent.

As for Rinne, Nashville’s netminder has played against the Oilers 10 times and has won 7 of those games, including a 3-0-1 record at Rexall Place with a 2.12 goals against average.

Game time is 8:30 pm CT Monday night. Nashville then travels to meet the Canucks for the first time since Vancouver eliminated the Predators from the playoffs in May.



Photo credit: Getty Images

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