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After scoring five goals in their season debut, the Nashville Predators will try to collect their second win of the new season when the Detroit Red Wings come to town tonight at 7 p.m. CT.
It’s the first of two meetings between the former divisional rivals on the schedule; the Preds will travel to Detroit in early November.
It was an ideal start to the 2019-20 campaign for the Predators on Thursday night, as they defeated the Minnesota Wild by a 5-2 final. Center Matt Duchene made his Nashville debut and posted three assists in the victory.
[Read More: Preds Projected Lineup vs. Red Wings]
[Listen: Predators Official Podcast with Viktor Arvidsson]
Nashville faced some adversity in that opening contest as they entered the third period down 2-1, but they rattled off four goals in the final frame to earn their first pair of important points to start the season.
“We were a little bit sleepy there, not bad, but just stopped attacking the way were in the first period in the second period, and we fell behind,” Predators Head Coach Peter Laviolette said of Opening Night following Friday’s practice. “It was nice to see we were able to come back from that. It’s a good trait to have in a team, good to build confidence that way, so it was a good start. We ended up winning a big hockey game, division game.”
Last Time Out:
Ryan Ellis, Mikael Granlund, Austin Watson, Viktor Arvidsson and Filip Forsberg all tallied on Thursday against the Wild; Duchene assisted on the goals from Ellis, Granlund and Forsberg. Winger Craig Smith recorded an assist on Arvidsson’s goal for his 300th NHL point. Pekka Rinne earned his first win of the season by making 22 saves on the evening, and he also passed Miikka Kiprusoff for the second-most games played (624) by a Finnish-born goaltender in NHL history.
In total, 11 players recorded at least one point for the Preds on Opening Night. Duchene’s three points were tops among his teammates, while Forsberg and Ellis each had a goal and an assist.
Detroit will play their first game of the 2019-20 season tonight when the face the Preds, and they’re expected to have star forward Dylan Larkin in the lineup after leaving practice earlier in the week due to a collision.
The status of forward Andreas Athanasiou for tonight’s game is uncertain as he continues to deal with an injury suffered in the preseason.
The Predators are 35-48-(4)-10 all-time against the Red Wings, including a 21-22-(2)-3 record at Bridgestone Arena. This will be the 98th meeting between the two teams, marking Nashville’s most games played against a non-Central Division opponent.
Nashville is seeking its first victory over Detroit on home ice since Dec. 30, 2013, a span of five games.
On Feb. 28, 2009, the Predators defeated the Red Wings, 8-0, at Bridgestone Arena. It remains the highest margin of victory in a game in franchise history.
Notables Versus Detroit:
Ryan Ellis (12/26/11), Roman Josi (11/26/11) and Filip Forsberg (4/14/13) made their NHL debuts against the Red Wings, and Ryan Johansen scored his first career NHL goal vs. Detroit on Oct. 25, 2011.
Calle Jarnkrok was acquired from Detroit along with Patrick Eaves and a second-round pick in the 2014 NHL Draft (traded to San Jose; San Jose selected Julius Bergman) in exchange for David Legwand on March 5, 2014.
Nick Bonino tallied a career-high four assists on March 26, 2016, vs. Detroit. He has eight points (3g-5a) in 16 career games against the Red Wings. Josi has 12 points (2g-10a) in 22 career meetings with Detroit, including five points (5a) in his last six games against the Red Wings.
When You Go:
The pregame festivities get underway at 3:30 p.m. CT this afternoon with a plaza party on the Bridgestone Arena plaza before arena doors open at 4 p.m.
The first regular-season Saturday Night in Smashville March to the Game gets underway this evening as well. Fans are asked to meet at 4th Avenue & Demonbreun St. at 5:50 p.m. CT to join in on Smashville’s newest tradition. Bring a sign or make one when you get to the plaza to show on FOX Sports Tennessee’s live premiere of Saturday Night in Smashville.
FOX Sports Tennessee’s Saturday Night in Smashville pre- and postgame shows will bring the excitement of live television to the heart of downtown Nashville and kickstart the Saturday night party on Broadway. Starting at 6 p.m. CT for each Saturday home game, the show will originate from the Bridgestone Arena Plaza and feature fans along with special guest commentators and sports and entertainment personalities.
The Nashville Predators Foundation presented by SmileDirectClub is hosting a “Shower Kit” drive to benefit ShowerUp, a charity that provides showers for the homeless in Nashville. Fans are asked to donate travel-sized shampoo, conditioner, deodorant and other toiletries on the Bridgestone Arena plaza prior to the game or at the Foundation area (outside of Section 116/117).
Please note the updated Bridgestone Arena bag policy for the Predators’ 2019-20 season:
The fastest way to enter Bridgestone Arena is to not bring a bag at all. However, clear, clutch or no bags grant guests access to our Express Lanes. Bags that are made of solid material that fit within the 12-inch-by-12-inch-by-6-inch size requirement will be placed through an X-ray scanner upon entry. Backpacks and large bags are prohibited from Bridgestone Arena. All clear bags must be completely clear and may not have any color tinting, printed designs or panels of fabric. All items brought are subject to a security search. Diaper bags that fit within the guidelines of the approved bags will be permitted.
To enhance the Nashville Predators game day experience, Bridgestone Arena has implemented Ticketmaster SafeTix, a new technology designed to provide the best possible entry experience and cut down on the number of fraudulent tickets in the marketplace. Using encrypted, rotating barcodes, SafeTix prevents fraud and ticket scalping through screenshotting and/or photocopying barcodes. Screenshots will no longer be valid for entry to Predators home games. The Predators also encourage all fans to be aware of the new “Clutch, Clear or No Bag” policy and to utilize Express Entry Lanes for expedited entry.
Watch and Listen:
Coverage for tonight’s contest begins with Saturday Night in Smashville, live on Fox Sports Tennessee at 6:00 p.m. (CT) with Lyndsay Rowley and Terry Crisp. Willy Daunic, Chris Mason and Kara Hammer have the call on the television side, while Pete Weber and Hal Gill will broadcast on 102.5 The Game and the Predators Radio Network. For broadcast information and channel locations throughout the country, click here.
If the Predators are playing hockey, you can count on the game being on at Preds Approved Bars & Restaurants. Locations throughout Tennessee may be seen by clicking here.
Listen to a Live Radio Feed (only active during the game broadcast window).
Watch a Live Stream of the game on the Fox Sports Go App or Watch on NHL.TV