Game 14 Preview: Predators at Avalanche

Duchene is faster than Weber is big - USA TODAY Sports

Nate MacKinnon vs Seth Jones: Round Two. Avalanche look for their 7th straight win against the scoring challenged Predators.

The Avalanche continue their 4 game home stand Wednesday night as Seth Jones and the Nashville Predator's come to town. This is the second of four meetings between the new division rivals, and the Avalanche lead this year's series 1-0 after a gritty win at the Pepsi Center on October 4th. Roman Josi, who was sidelined with a concussion after a huge Steve Downie check the last time these teams met, returned to the lineup late last week. It will be interesting to see if "tough guy" Paul Gaustad follows up on the veiled threats he made in response to the hit. A quick look at hockeyfights.com indicates that Gaustad is a pretty bad fighter, who gets manhandled by anyone his size or bigger. Unfortunately that means Gaustad will likely look to settle this with someone smaller than Bordeleau. Gaustad doesnt have a history, but Avs fans know how ugly talk of "retribution" can turn, so hopefully he has his head screwed on right before tomorrow nights game.

On the hockey side of things, both teams are coming off of Saturday night wins. The Predators will look for their second straight win, while the Avalanche attempt their longest win streak of this short season, at seven games. Alex Tanguay will miss his first game of the season with a knee injury while Jamie McGinn returns to the lineup after his own knee problems. To fill in for the injured Tanguay, Nathan MacKinnon will spend his first full game on Paul Stastny's wing, where he scored the game winning goal against Montreal. Gabriel Landeskog has scored 5 goals in his last 7 games and rides a two game goal scoring streak while Matt Duchene hasnt scored in the last two games despite firing 11 shots on net.

Projected Lines:

O'Reilly - Duchene SLAPFIGHT!!! - Parenteau (back by popular demand)
Landeskog - Stastny - MacKinnon
McGinn - Mitchell - Talbot
McLeod - Cliche - Bordeleau

Hejda - Johnson
Wilson - Guenin
Benoit - Sarich

Varlamov

Giguere

Scratches: Tanguay (knee), Holden, Hunwick

The Bad Guys:

- The Preds have scored just 31 goals, good for last in the only relevant NHL conference (they lead 6 teams in the Eastern Conference)

- David Legwand, Patric Hornqvist, Shea Weber and Eric Nystrom are tied for the team lead with 4 goals each.

- Pekka Rinne is still out of the lineup with a hip infection (ewww) so Carter Hutton is the likely starter for Nashville. He is 3-1-1 with a .914 SV%

- The Predators big, offensive offseason acquisition Viktor Stalberg has 7 shots and 2 PIM in his first 8 games. Thats everything. He's been bad, but he'll continue making $3M a year for the next 4 years anyway.

- The Predators score 2.21 goals per game. As has been the case against the Predators for years... Score three? GG

Game Time: 7:30 pm MT on ALT

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