NHL Preview from The Sports Network|
Thursday, October 13th
(All times eastern)
Phoenix Coyotes (0-1-1) at Nashville Predators (2-0-0), 8 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Nashville Predators look to stay unbeaten when they
entertain the Phoenix Coyotes tonight in their home opener from Bridgestone
Nashville is aiming for its second straight 3-0 start and has taken care of
Columbus and St. Louis on the road so far this season. The Predators were last
in action on Saturday against the Blues and handed them a 4-2 setback behind
two goals from David Legwand and a goal and two assists by rookie Craig Smith.
Legwand also had two assists for a four-point night.
"We made some adjustments out there tonight and it worked out," said Smith,
who is the first Predator to score in each of his first two games. "It felt
good out there and we want to keep it going."
Legwand is the first Nashville player to post four points in a road game since
Steve Sullivan recorded a goal and three assists on Dec. 2, 2009 at Minnesota.
Pekka Rinne, the 2011 Vezina Trophy runner-up, stopped 31 of the 33 shots he
faced in the win. He is three wins shy of 100 for his career. The Predators
will celebrate their 1,000th regular season game Saturday versus Montreal and
have won four straight home openers.
Phoenix will close out a season-opening three-game road trip this evening
after losing back-to-back games in San Jose and Dallas. In a 2-1 shootout loss
to the Stars on Monday, Radim Vrbata scored a power-play goal and Mike Smith
made 24 saves for the Coyotes.
"It was probably a game we deserved a better fate, but if we play like that,
we'll get our amount of wins," Phoenix coach Dave Tippett said. "I thought our
guys competed hard, we did a lot of little things very well tonight, and it's
too bad we didn't get the two points."
The Coyotes are 50-14-21 in one-goal games since Tippett took over. He is just
seven wins short of 100 victories with the franchise.
Nashville and Phoenix split four meetings a year ago, while the Coyotes have
dropped five of their last seven contests as the guest in this series. Phoenix
is only 3-11-1 in its previous 15 games at Nashville.
10/13 10:57:31 ET