Preview: Blackhawks at Predators
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[December 17, 2013]
(SportsDirect Inc.) — The Nashville Predators have yielded a
total of only four goals in three straight victories but get a major
test when the defending Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks visit on
Tuesday. The Predators scored a season-high seven goals the last time
Chicago came to Nashville on Nov. 16, but the Blackhawks lead the league
in scoring and victories. Six Blackhawks have recorded more points than
David Legwand, Nashville's leading scorer, and the club has netted 25
goals in its last five contests, four of which were wins.
Chicago's Patrick Kane is two points behind Pittsburgh's Sidney
Crosby (47) and has registered 17 during a nine-game point streak.
The game also features two of the NHL's top defensemen in 2010
Norris Trophy winner Duncan Keith of Chicago and two-time runner-up
Shea Weber of Nashville. The Predators had lost six straight to the
Blackhawks before Craig Smith led the way with three points in last
month's 7-2 win.
TV: 8 p.m. ET, CSN (Chicago) FSN Tennessee (Nashville)
ABOUT THE BLACKHAWKS (24-7-5): Keith has 30 points, tied for the
league lead among defensemen through Sunday, and Kane has notched at
least one point in 21 of his last 22 contests. Patrick Sharp also
has 33 points, captain Jonathan Toews 32 and Marian Hossa 29 for an
offense averaging 3.64 goals. Antti Raanta is 4-1-0 since replacing
injured starter Corey Crawford in net.
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ABOUT THE PREDATORS (16-14-3): Carter Hutton turned aside 97
of the 101 shots he faced over the last three games to improve
his save percentage to .913 after the Predators had suffered
through a five-game winless streak (0-4-1). Legwand leads the
club with 24 points, and no one else has more than 17 as
Nashville sits in the bottom-third of the league in scoring
(2.33). Weber is tied for the team lead with seven goals while
fellow blue-liner Roman Josi has notched five points during a
Nashville LW Viktor Stalberg, who won the Stanley Cup with
Chicago last season, has four points in his last five games and
notched a goal against his former team Nov. 16.
Chicago coach Joel Quenneville, who has 684 career victories,
needs one more to pass Pat Quinn for fourth place on the
The Predators (12-0-1) and Blackhawks (13-0-0) are two of six
teams that are unbeaten in regulation when leading after the
PREDICTION: Blackhawks 4, Predators 3
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