JETBLAST: NASHVILLE @ WINNIPEG

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JETBLAST

Nashville Predators (23-23-8) at Winnipeg Jets (25-24-5) 7:00 p.m., MTS Centre TV: TSNJets, FS-TN Radio: TSN 1290

The Nashville Predators visit the Winnipeg Jets Tuesday evening for the fourt of five meetings between the two teams this season. Winnipeg has only one win in the 3 games they have played, that being a 5-0 drubbing at home November 8th. Winnipeg is a completely different team now, but will try and repeat that effort. Nashville on the other hand has slid in behind Winnipeg into the last spot in the Central division, and they will try to move out. Jets and Preds in Winnipeg Tuesday night, Lets Go!

Predators

Nashvilles last effort was one they would like to forget as they suffered a 5-1 beat down at the hands of the young Edmonton Oilers. It was the Preds 2nd loss in a row, both coming in Alberta, and both after surrendering 5 goals. The goaltending in Nashville has been a problem lately, with Pekka Rinne still out, Carter Hutton has not been getting the job done, and the newly acquired Devon Dubnyk has yet to see the ice with his new team. Though defence is normally the strong point of this team, without a solid number one goalie they have struggled keeping the puck out of the net, and with the way the Jets have been scoring recently, that may be a problem Tuesday night. Nashville is a scrappy team that has had the Jets number, going 8-2-2 since the franchised moved from Atlanta, it should be a very interesting match up.

Jets

For two periods the Jets could hardly manage a shot, nevermind a goal, but the Jets persisted and after managing only 6 shots in the first two periods, they managed 15 in the third. Those shots led to 3 goals and an unbelievable upset of the Chicago Black Hawks. It was the Jets 6th win in the 7 starts since the coaching change and things seem to be looking up for this franchise. Blake Wheeler notched two goals Sunday night, raising his season total to 21, already matching a career high. After a very poor start to the season, Wheeler has been over a point a game player since the start of December. The combination of speed, a wicked wrister, and two linemates who have been nearly as hot as him, has made him a consistant threat every night. What appears to be the new first line of Kane, Scheifele, Wheeler, has been great and as long as they continue their play, this Jets success could continue.

Keys to the Game

Energy: 6 wins in 7, including wins over the Hawks and the Ducks on the road have this team on a high. The crowd at MTS is sure to be jumping but the Jets must manage emotions, and play smart or they will find themselves losing to lesser team.

Score First: The Preds are 17-2-5 when scoring first and 16-1-1 when leading after the first. The Jets cannot allow the Preds to get ahead or they may not be able to come back.

Goaltending: Pretty much consistently over these 7 games the Jets have gotten outstanding goaltending from Ondrej Pavelec and Al Montoya, if it continues the Jets are in a good spot.

Starting Goalies

Ondrej Pavelec (16-20-4) GAA: 2.97 SV% .902
Devon Dubnyk (11-18-3) GAA: 3.43 SV% .891

Injuries

Slater WPG, (Sports Hernia) out
Clitsome WPG, (Back surgery) out
Postma WPG, (blood clot) out
Halischuk WPG, (arm) out

Rinne NSH, (hip) out

Last 10 (W-L-OTL)

Jets: 6-4-0
Predators: 4-4-2

Prediction

Jets keep racking up W’s
Jets 4 Predators 2

Become an MVP

Become an MVP with Winnipeg Whiteout and never miss a thing.

Diehard Winnipeg sports fan. Agree or disagree with something I wrote? Find me on twitter @seantheoilcan and let me know Go Jets Go!