Nashville Predators (9-9-2) at Detroit Red Wings (9-5-7), 7:30 p.m.
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Nashville Predators broke out of their scoring slump
in a big way the last time out. The Preds will try to keep the offense going
on Tuesday, when they visit the sliding Detroit Red Wings for a battle at Joe
Nashville went 0-4-0 from Nov. 8-15 and scored a total of two goals during
that slide, but the club posted a season-high seven goals in Saturday's 7-2
rout of the visiting Chicago Blackhawks. It was the first regulation setback
for the Blackhawks since Oct. 26.
The Preds jumped out to a 4-0 lead Saturday against the defending Stanley Cup
champions and never allowed Chicago to get closer than two goals of the lead
after that. Craig Smith posted a goal and two assists for Nashville, while
Shea Weber, Matt Cullen and Patric Hornqvist each had a goal and one helper.
"It's been a tough couple of games," said Smith. "I thought we did a great job
sticking with it."
Marek Mazanec stopped 39 shots for Nashville to earn his first career win.
Mazanec expects to get the start over Carter Hutton again on Tuesday.
With this evening's tilt in Detroit, the Predators are playing on the road for
the eighth time in nine games. Nashville, which will complete a two-game swing
with Thursday's tilt in Toronto, is 4-7-1 as the guest this season.
Although the Red Wings enter Tuesday on a six-game losing streak, the club has
earned a point in five straight games. Detroit's last three contests ended in
shootout defeats, including a 5-4 road loss Saturday against the New York
Islanders. Frans Nielsen scored the lone shootout goal to help the Isles notch
their fifth straight win in the series against the Red Wings.
Nielsen beat Jonas Gustavsson on a backhander to begin the tiebreaker. Henrik
Zetterberg and Pavel Datsyuk, whose second goal forced overtime, were both
turned away by Kevin Poulin before Todd Bertuzzi missed the net with his
Gustavsson, making his first start since Oct. 17, stopped 37 shots for
Detroit, which is on its first six-game slide since an 0-4-2 stretch from
March 10-21, 2012.
The last time Detroit went seven games without a win was from Dec. 18-31,
1998, when it was 0-6 with a tie. The Red Wings haven't lost seven straight
games since Jan. 14-30, 1991.
Detroit was outshot 15-4 in the third, but Datsyuk managed to send the game to
overtime. Playing in his 800th NHL game, the smooth Russian whipped a
backhander from a sharp angle into the net off Islanders defenseman Andrew
MacDonald with 42.5 seconds remaining and Gustavsson pulled for an extra
"We never really got going in the third. I thought they skated well," said
Detroit head coach Mike Babcock.
Datsyuk has 11 goals this season to lead Detroit. Zetterberg is next on the
team with 10 markers, but no other Red Wing has more than five goals.
Tuesday's matchup is the first of two scheduled meetings between the Predators
and Red Wings this season. The clubs had been divisional foes before the Red
Wings moved from the Western to Eastern Conference prior to this season as
part of the NHL's realignment plan.
Detroit has taken three straight overall in the series against the Preds and
Nashville has lost four of its past five games in the Motor City.
The Red Wings are beginning a three-game homestand tonight, but are only 3-2-5
as the host this season.
11/19 10:59:22 ET
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