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Nashville Predators vs. Calgary Flames
Friday, March 15th, 2013 | 8:00pm (CT)
Calgary, Alberta – The Nashville Predators and Calgary Flames meet for the first of three games in a 39-day span on Friday night at the Scotiabank Saddledome. The Predators will host the Flames in six days on March 21st, and again on April 23rd.
A season ago, the Predators claimed three of four games against the Flames, including each of the last two meetings – both at Bridgestone Arena.On January 1st, 2012, Sergei Kostitsyn registered the 21st hat trick in franchise history in a 5-3 win at Bridgestone Arena, and on December 13th, 2011, Colin Wilson scored the game-winning goal at 3:31 of the third period as Nashville edged Calgary, 2-1.
The Preds also won in their first of two 2011-12 trips to Cowtown on October 22nd, 2011 when Pekka Rinne stopped all 33 shots he faced in a 2-0 victory. The shutout was the 21st of his career, tying the franchise record he would break one week later against the Anaheim Ducks.
Rinne posted a 3-1-0 record with a 1.25 goals-against average and a .958 save percentage against Calgary a season ago, recording his first three wins against the Flames after posting a 0-4-2 record against them prior to the 2011-12 season. In addition to his hat trick, Kostitsyn had a goal in the October 22nd win to finish the season with four goals in four games.
Matt Halischuk had the second highest point production against Calgary a season ago with three points (1g-2a) in four games. Martin Erat has 25 career points (8g-17a) in 33 games against the Flames. Scott Hannan made his NHL debut on October 9th, 1998 at Calgary as a member of the San Jose Sharks. He also spent the 2011-12 season with the Flames, posting 12 points (2g-10a) and 38 penalty minutes in 78 games.
Rinne Solid in Net
Since January 31st, Pekka Rinne has been one of the League’s top netminders – posting a 1.98 goals-against average and .925 save percentage while appearing in 20 of Nashville’s 21 games during that span.
In addition to leading the League in shutouts, the Finnish netminder ranks second in minutes played (1,435:35), seventh in goals-against average (2.13), tied for ninth in save percentage (.919) and tied for 11th in wins (10) among all starting goaltenders.
The Captain Stays Strong
Shea Weber has been nearly a point-per-game player for the Predators as of late after posting 13 points (4g-9a) in his last 14 outings, including six points (1g-5a) in his last five games.
Weber has led the Preds in ice time in 21-of-27 games this season and ranks 10th in the League in average ice time (25:41).
Despite his high ice time, Weber has only been on the ice for 12 even-strength goals against this season. Weber also ranks among the League’s top defensemen in hits this season (60).
Last Time Out
Nashville 4 at Vancouver 7
Matt Halischuk has posted three points (1g-2a) in two games since returning from a conditioning stint in Milwaukee earlier this week. Last night’s two-point effort (1g-1a) was his first multi-point outing since April 7th, 2012 vs. the Colorado Avalanche (1g-1a).
With an assist on Bourque’s third-period goal, David Legwand has points (2g-3a) in four straight games after posting just two points (1g-1a) in his previous 10 outings.
Zach Boychuk pocketed his second point in a Preds sweater last night with his assist on Nick Spaling’s second-period goal. He has two points (1g-1a) in three games since joining Nashville on March 5th.
Craig Smith has three points (3a) in his last four outings and seven points (3g-4a) in his last 12 after recording one point/assist in his first 15 games of 2012-13.
Nick Spaling has goals in back-to-back games after being held goalless since February 14th. The Predators are 18-2-1 all-time when Spaling scores.
Career Highlights vs. Calgary
Scott Hannan – Made his NHL debut on October 9th, 1998 at Calgary (with San Jose).
Back to Backs
The Predators are playing the backend of their sixth of nine sets of back-to-backs in 2012-13 tonight after falling to the Canucks, 7-4, on Thursday night at Rogers Arena. The Preds are 1-3-2 on the front end and 2-2-1 on the back end of two-games-in-two-nights scenarios to this point.
Six times the Preds will play one game at home and one on the road (or vice versa), twice they’ll hit Bridgestone Arena ice on back-to-back days, and on one occasion will play two road games in two nights. A season ago, Nashville was 8-3-0 on the front end of back-to-backs, and 5-6-0 on the back end.
TopicsAnaheim Ducks, Bridgestone Arena, Calgary Alberta, Calgary Flames, Colorado Avalanche, Craig Smith, David Legwand, Gabriel Bourque, Kevin Klein, Martin Erat, Matt Halischuk, Mike Fisher, Milwaukee Admirals, Nashville Predators, National Hockey League, NHL, Nick Spaling, Pekka Rinne, Predators, Roman Josi, San Jose Sharks, Scotiabank Saddledome, Scott Hannan, Sergei Kostitsyn, Shea Weber, Zach Boychuk
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