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SoCal Back-to-back

January 5, 2020, 1:53 PM ET [10 Comments]
Paul McCann
Nashville Predators Blogger •Predators Radio Network • RSSArchiveCONTACT
I wrote this one New Year’s Eve…
“It needs to start tomorrow… it needs to start at puck drop tomorrow.”

Well... it did... but what I forgot to write was that it needed to last for all 60 minutes… though it appears that the lesson was learned last night as the Predators started fast and finished strong in their 4-1 win over Los Angeles in a completion of a bi-coastal Tennessee professional sweep yesterday, started by the Grizzlies at Staples Center in the afternoon, the Titans knocking New England out of the playoffs then the Preds finishing it off early this morning in beating the Kings.

The short-handed Predators played well last night, from the net out, even given the fact they were missing Colton Sissons, Ryan Ellis, who was placed on IR after Corey Perry cemented his reputation as public enemy number one in Pred Nation, and Dante Fabbro who missed last night with an upper body injury and Matt Duchene who is battling an undisclosed illness.

We have seen this team react well to the “next man up” scenario and last night’s win was a perfect example of it. I was impressed by the play of the Smith/Grimaldi/Bonino line and Yakov Trenin continues to make a strong statement that he is ready for prime time. The JoFA line looked dangerous all night and Pekka Rinne was strong between the pipes.

But now they need to do it again in Anaheim as this bizarre roadie continues. The Predators will fly home tomorrow, then have a single home game Tuesday night before heading out again.

Anaheim creates an interesting challenge for Nashville, the Predators clipped the Ducks 6-1 back in October when Anaheim was actually playing decent hockey and surprising the league with a good start. That has faded, as has the Ducks position in the standings as they have dropped to the bottom of the Western Conference standings. They are 3-6-1 in their last 10 and have lost their last two.

The patchwork d-pairings coach Peter Laviolette rolled out last night were effective and Roman Josi continues a Norris-worthy season with his nine game scoring streak intact. I would expect to see Juuse Saros in net tonight for Nashville as Pekka Rinne has seemed to stabilize over his last three appearances but Laviolette has been reticent to start Rinne in back-to-back situations.

No word on Matt Duchene’s status for tonight. Game time is 9pm central, so brew up the coffee and be ready for a late one. Coverage on NBCSN and 102.5 the Game.


Random Notes – Presented by

- Roman Josi had two assists last night, running his scoring streak to nine.

- Rocco Grimaldi and Ryan Johansen both potted goals last night as did Yakov Trenin and Craig Smith.

- I thought that Jarred Tonordi played a solid game last night, especially answering the bell with the Kings’ Kyle Clifford near the end of the first period.

- The Preds took a second period punch last night, but did not slide into another funk, allowing their opponent to pot several… it was good to see them react well.

- Tonight’s games – Noon – SJS @ WSH. 4pm – FLA @ PIT, TBL @ CAR. 6pm – CGY @ MIN. 6:30pm – DET @ CHI. 9pm – NSH @ ANA.


SlapShot Radio is back for our 12th season as Zack, Brent and I are now on Monday night’s this season. The best hour of hockey talk on the longest running hockey show in the southeast … 7pm Mondays on 102.5 the Game.

Our sponsor list continues to grow. Not only are we welcoming back Drs. Jane Bacon and Aileen Kruger at Hermitage Family and Cosmetic Dentistry … make your appointment at (615) 872-7762 and our good friend Carter Church, Your Murfreesboro real estate expert with Weichert – The Andrews Group. And our newest sponsors… Cool Springs Wines and Spirits! The largest spirit store in all of middle Tennessee! And La-Z-Boy Nashville! Three locations, locally owned and operated, check out La-Z-Boy in Murfreesboro, Hendersonville and Cool Springs!



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