Wednesday, March 16, 2011

St. Patrick's Day Showdown in Nashville

The Nashville Predators will take on the Boston Bruins on Thursday for a St. Patrick's Day showdown. This is a huge game for the Predators, as they are hoping to collect points to move into the top 8 in the Western Conference.

This game has a couple of super-star matchups. Hard shot heavyweights Zdeno Chara and Shea Weber will go head to head on the ice, as will Tim Thomas and Pekka Rinne who are the best two goalies in the NHL. This is a perfect game for a fan to go to. There will be beer, there will be blazing slapshots, and there will be physicality throughout the entire night.

My player to watch for the Bruins is Rich Peverley. Peverley was drafted by the Predators and has since gone to play for Atlanta and Boston. So far this season, Peverley has 37 points on the year. He'll want to come out hard against the Preds.

For Nashville, my player to watch is Mike Fisher. Fisher has played in his entire career in the Eastern Conference besides the past month and a week that he has spent in a Nashville Predator uniform. In fact, he was in the same division as Boston when he played for Ottawa, so he's going to have a lot of familiarity with the Bruins.

The matchup between Pekka Rinne and Tim Thomas is particularly interesting. These are the two leading candidates for the Vezina Trophy, so one can expect a fairly low-scoring game. Both goalies have been phenomenal this year. No build up is needed for the Weber-Chara matchup. They have the hardest two shots in the league, and it's really not close. They can both smash the puck offensively, and are extremely good in their own end defensively.

With a win, the Nashville Predators can possibly move back into the top 8 in the Western Conference standings. They missed an opportunity to do so on Tuesday night when they fell to the Los Angeles Kings. Thursday night's game is important. It's a little different because of Boston being in the Eastern Conference. The Preds don't have to be afraid of this game going into an overtime or a shootout. Boston is an Eastern Conference team, so it doesn't really matter. However, the Preds really need to come away with two points in this game.

All fans in attendance for Thursday night's game will receive St. Patrick's Day beads presented by MY MAPCO. Come out and enjoy a great night for hockey in Nashville, and hopefully a Predators victory. The game starts at 7:00.