Tuesday, March 6, 2012
The Nashville Predators will host the Los Angeles Kings on Tuesday night at Bridgestone Arena for the second time in eight days. Last week, the Predators were able to get a 2-1 victory over the Kings after a stellar effort by Pekka Rinne.
Los Angeles has scored the least amount of goals in the NHL so far this season. With a roster that boasts names like Anze Kopitar, Dustin Brown, Simon Gagne, Mike Richards and Jeff Carter, that doesn't make a whole lot of sense.
"You can't take anything for granted. They have a lot of guys that can score goals. They play a system that is responsible. They try to play tight games, but they have guys that can do the trick so you have to be aware of them," said Predators defenseman Hal Gill.
"I'm surprised they haven't scored a little bit more than they have," said Predators defenseman Jack Hillen.
The Kings have been playing well as of late. They have won three out of their last four games, with the only loss being against Nashville last Monday. The Predators will have to play a much better game than they did last week if they want to beat the Kings this time around.
"They are a fast-paced team, and they like to throw as many pucks as possible to the net. We've got to make sure we take care of our turnovers and make sure we limit them," said Predators forward Craig Smith.
Nashville is coming off of a 3-1 win over the Florida Panthers on Saturday night. The Predators will begin a three-game homestand tonight against the Kings. This week presents a big opportunity for them to gain ground on St. Louis and Detroit.
"Points at home are big, and you should be getting the majority of them. It's coming down to the end here, and it's getting pretty tight. We want to start catching teams, and we've got to start making sure we're taking care of home wins," Smith said.
Tonight's game starts at 7 p.m. central time. Rinne will most likely be the starter in net for the Predators, and Kevin Klein will not play.