NHL Preview from The Sports Network|
Monday, December 23rd
(All times Eastern)
Boston Bruins (24-10-2) at Nashville Predators (16-16-4), 8 p.m.
(SportsNetwork.com) - After battling back to earn a point last time out, the
Nashville Predators hope to avoid a fourth straight setback on Monday night as
they play host to the Boston Bruins.
The Predators found themselves down by three goals with just over five minutes
to play in the first period on Saturday against the visiting Montreal
Canadiens, but got goals from Shea Weber, Gabriel Bourque and Nick Spaling
over the next two periods.
Weber's power-play tally tied the game with 6:20 to go in regulation, but
Montreal got an unassisted goal from David Desharnais 1:43 into overtime after
he took the puck from Mattias Ekholm at the left boards and rifled a slap shot
past Carter Hutton from the left circle.
Hutton ended with 17 saves after taking over in the first period from Marek
Mazanec, who yielded three goals on five shots.
"We buckled down and ... stayed with it," Preds coach Barry Trotz said.
"Instead of pouting about it we got determined and relentless and chipped away
at their lead."
Nashville lost rookie defenseman Seth Jones late in the first period after he
took a puck to the face. However, he was able to practice on Sunday.
The Bruins, meanwhile, are coming off a split of a home-and-home set with the
Buffalo Sabres, losing the road portion on Thursday before notching a 4-1 home
victory on Saturday.
David Krejci broke a 1-1 tie early in the second period with a goal and
assisted on Milan Lucic's insurance goal in the third. Reilly Smith scored a
pair of goals, including an empty-netter in the closing seconds.
"I think it was good, but not good enough," said Krejci. "You need effort and
you also have to capitalize on your scoring chances. I felt like we had an OK
game, and in this game, OK is not good enough."
Tuukka Rask made 34 saves for Boston, which has won six of its last eight.
The Bruins could have defenseman Adam McQuaid back in the lineup tonight. He
has missed nine straight due to a nagging lower-body injury, an ailment that
kept him out of eight games earlier in the season.
Also, forward Brad Marchand is expected to play tonight after sitting out
practice on Sunday for a maintenance day.
The Bruins are 3-0-2 in their last five versus the Predators. They have lost
three straight in Nashville, the past two beyond regulation.
12/23 10:50:49 ET