Nashville Predators @ Anaheim Ducks
Wednesday October 26, 2016 7:30 PM PST
TV: PRIME, FS-TIN, SKY Sports New Zealand
Radio: AM 830, AnaheimDucks.com
Your Enemy: On The Forecheck
Despite not really deserving a point in their trip to San Jose, the Ducks managed to scrounge one in an injury plagued and somewhat messy affair. They now have points in the last three games which has them sitting tied for second to last in the Pacific with the Kings.
Most worryingly - they lost captain Ryan Getzlaf to an apparent wrist or arm injury sustained whilst blocking a shot midway through the game. John Gibson also had to come on in relief of Jonathan Bernier who did not return after the first period with the dreaded “upper body injury”. Cam Fowler was his usual beast-mode self that we have seen of late and his play seems to be contagious because Chris Wagner has been coming on in the last few games also. Scoring the only Ducks goal last night and coming close in OT (we won’t mention the breakdown between he and Theodore that lead to the Sharks winning).
The Predators are making their first swing out west since being ousted by the Sharks in the 2nd round of last years playoffs. They have had a similar start to the season as the Ducks - picking up 2 wins and dropping 3 games, though they have played two games less. They are coming off a big win over the Penguins at home, where they knocked over the defending Stanley Cup champs despite missing 5 players to food poisoning (remind me to never try the home cooking at Bridgestone Arena) including Pekka Rinne.
However given the three day layover between games - those players are expected to be back in the starting lineup for their clash with the Ducks. There isn’t a hell of a lot of difference between the team that so rudely dashed our hopes last year and the team we will see tonight. There is one P.K Subban replacing Shea Weber of course but other than that the Preds had a relatively quiet off season. Subban is tied with Forsberg for the team lead in points with five and will need to be pressured at all times if the Ducks are to stand a chance of winning.
Speaking of Forsberg - I for one am hoping a young Josh Manson executes some form of revenge on the pesky swede for the elbow to the head that took him out of last years playoffs or that he at least experiences some form of bad karma during the season.
Getzlaf and Bernier are day to day as I write this but if neither can go for tonights game - Gibson likely gets the start and either Sgarbossa, Wagner or Vermette goes on the top line. Either way - the Ducks need to look to their depth scoring more than ever and to work as a team like they did against the Canucks if they hope to win this rematch.
RC said Bernier suffered a muscle injury. Said it was too early to determine if he or Getzlaf are available for tomorrow vs. NSH.— Eric Stephens (@icemancometh) October 26, 2016