The Tampa Bay Lightning (4-3-2) take on the Nashville Predators (3-4-1) at Nashville. Both teams have similar records for the opening three weeks of the season and each has had a painful losing streak. However, the difference is that the Bolts are looking to add their fourth consecutive win to their quest to erase a disheartening five-game losing streak. In contrast, the Predators are coming off of a 1-3 home loss to the San Jose Sharks and have lost five of their last six games.
The Bolts and Predators have very different teams. Nashville has been outshot in each of their 8 games and has an average of 21.9 shots-on-goal per game, making it dead last in the entire league. This makes Nashville a selective type shooting team, one that waits for optimal conditions and then strikes hard. Quality is valued over quantity. Tampa Bay has outshot a little more than half of its opponents and, expectedly, is in the middle of the league with 30 shots-on-goal per game. Though not at the top of the league as far as shots fired, the Bolts have a tendency to punctuate each game with periods of heavy shooting type play, one that throws the puck at the net consistently. Quantity and quality are both valued. In all likelihood, shots-on-goal will play a huge factor in tonight's game.
Things to Keep in Mind:
Lightning defense has improved from the season's start. However, several mistakes in the Bolt's win against the Sabres shows that the defensive game has not had a chance to solidify.
Nashville's forward Craig Smith leads his team in goals with 3 scores. Lightning's Vincent Lecavalier and Steven Stamkos each have 4 goals while Martin St. Louis and Ryan Malone each have 3 goals.
I am predicting a Lighting win.
Game Date/Time: Thursday, October 27, 8:00 P.M. ET
Venue: Bridgestone Arena, Nashville, Tennessee
TV: Sun Sports (USA - Local)