By Michael Walters
The Anaheim Ducks (1-3-1) begin a road trip against the Nashville Predators (5-1-0) tonight at 5pm. The Ducks first official road trip of the season begins against the extremely competitive Central Division. In addition to the game preview below, we also preview the entire road trip on our latest podcast. You can listen here: DucksNPucks iTunes or scroll to the bottom for more options.
Looking for a place to watch the game tonight? We are having our second watch party at Avila’s El Ranchito in Orange. Click here for more information: DucksNPucks Watch Party Hope to see you there!
Keys To The Game:
1. Power Play: The Anaheim Ducks are the only team in the NHL to have not scored on the power play yet. They need to get back to basics by setting up the power play earlier, creating traffic in front, and not worrying about making a perfect play.
2. Face-offs: The Ducks are one of the better teams in the face-off circle ranking 10th in the league at 51.4%. They need to continue this trend to help create more scoring opportunities throughout the game.
1. Power Play: The Preds have the 9th best power play in the NHL at 22.2%. The Ducks need to stay out of the penalty box as much as much as possible to keep this game close.
2. Defense: The Preds are tied for 7th in the league with a Goals Against average of only 2.17. The defense has kept Nashville in their games as they have only outscored their opponents by four goals total in the early season.
Players To Watch:
1. Corey Perry: He finally registered a point in the last game against MInnesota (an assist). He hasn’t scored yet, but you know he has to heat up at some point and why not on this road trip?
2. Mike Santorelli: If I would have told you after five games that Santorelli would be tied for the lead in goals amongst forwards you would have laughed at me. He played on Nashville during the 2008-09 and 2009-10 seasons. He also played a partial season there last year so he may have an extra jump in his step tonight.
1. James Neal: After being traded to Nashville from Pittsburgh in 2014, Neal has worked well for the Predators. Last season he scored 23 goals in 67 games and this year he is off to a red hot start with five goals already in just six games.
2. Filip Forsberg: Forsberg has provided a well balanced game in the early going with two goals and four assists. The top line of him, Mike Fisher, and James Neal has been one of the best in the NHL so far this season. The Ducks are going to have to work very hard tonight to slow them down.
Anaheim Ducks Projected Lineup:
Since the lineup worked last Sunday against the Wild, there are not many changes. Clayton Stoner has been cleared to play, while Simon Despres has not. Nate Thompson was seen skating at practice yesterday, but he is also not ready to play yet. Stoner appears to be drawing in for Korbinian Holzer tonight.
Anton Khudobin will get another start. Frederik Andersen is not injured or ill. It appears Bruce Boudreau may be playing the hot hand, hence the second straight start for Khudobin. If there is another update on this, then I will post it here.
Nashville Predators Projected Lineup:
Ducks: Anton Khudobin: 1-1-0 GAA 3.29 SV% .907 (Probable)
Predators: Pekka Rinne: 4-1-0 GAA 1.98 SV% .927 (Probable)
We also have a podcast previewing the first road of the season! Click below to listen!
You can also find the podcast here:
Click here to subscribe and listen to the podcast on iTunes: Ducks N Pucks iTunes. And if you have trouble with the link then go to iTunes and search for “ducksnpucks” in the podcast category.
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