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Predatorial Pregame Warmup: Jan. 10, 2015


Jan 10, 2015

Written by: Saralyn Norkus


Last updated: January 10, 2015 at 12:34 am


Nashville Predators (27-9-4) at Minnesota Wild (18-16-5)
Gametime: 1:00pm CT / 2:00pm ET
Television: FS-Tennessee
Radio: 102.5 The Game



Nashville Predators - Ryan Ellis (lower body), James Neal (lower body), Eric Nystrom (upper body)

Minnesota Wild - Darcy Kuemper (lower body), Marco Scandella (upper body), Nate Prosser (flu), Mikael Granlund (wrist), Keith Ballard (concussion)

Projected Goaltending Matchup

Pekka Rinne 27-6-2, 3 SO, .929 Sv%, 2.00 GAA


Niklas Backstrom 5-4-3, .893 Sv%, 2.73 GAA

Keep an eye on...

Nashville Predators -

Taylor Beck: Having been out since Dec. 30, Beck is expected to be back in the lineup today in Minnesota. On Friday, Beck skated on a line with Mike Fisher and Colin Wilson. In 28 games, Beck has come up with four goals and four assists.

Minnesota Wild -

Zack Parise: The Wild are expecting to have Parise back in the lineup just three days after the passing of his father, former NHLer J.P Parise. Minnesota’s leading scorer missed the past two games while spending time with his ailing father. Paris has scored 14 goals in 32 games.

Main Storylines

Nashville Predators -

Having become the No. 1 team in the NHL after their 3-2 overtime win against Dallas on Thursday, the Predators now have a target on their backs that every other team will be aiming for. First up to take a shot is Minnesota, which is a team that is in desperation mode.

Tonight’s game marks the second of five meetings between the division rivals. The last time that Nashville was in Minnesota, the game turned into a high-scoring overtime thriller. This time around, the Predators will be looking to hold onto their top spot with another win in St. Paul.

In their past 10 games, the Preds are 7-1-2 and have been averaging a little over two goals per game.

Minnesota Wild -

Frustrations have continued to mount for the Wild, who are near the bottom of the Western Conference and last in their division thanks to a record of 18-16-5. Minnesota has struggled in their past 10 games, going 2-4-4. The team’s last win came on Jan. 2 against Toronto.

Goal production has been a slight challenge for Minnesota this season, and they currently have goal differential of negative-5 having been outscored 114-109.

The Wild have lost starting goalie Darcy Kuemper for a minimum of the next three games due to a lower body injury.

Last time out...

On Dec. 20, the Preds managed a 6-5 overtime win in Minnesota.

One interesting fact...

The five goals scored by Minnesota on Dec. 20 marked the first time this season that any team had gotten that many past Pekka Rinne.


Photo Credit: Sarah Fuqua