After laying an egg in a 4-0 loss in Anaheim, the Nashville Predators travel north the the Staples Center to face the red-hot Los Angeles Kings in a "radio only" game at 3 p.m. Central.
While the Predators have been fighting to reach the .500 mark the Kings have not lost in regulation in their last eight games (6-0-2). The King's last game, on Thursday, was a one-sided affair where they dominated the Stanley Cup Champion, Pittsburgh Penguins.
The Predators remain without key players Shea Weber (foot), J.P. Dumont (Back) and Colin Wilson (groin). They are hoping to have Martin Erat back for today's game.
On paper, the game really appears to be a mismatch. The Kings are led in scoring by Anze Kopitar who has 13 goals and 13 assists to lead the NHL. The Predators do not have a player with more than three goals and only J.P Dumont is in double digits in points (3 g, 8a).
Dan Ellis (2-3-1) is slated to start in goal for the Preds in his first start since he was pulled in Minnesota after giving up three quick goals on October 28. Ellis is 4-1 lifetime versus the Kings. The surprising, Jonathan Quick (10-3-2) will start for the Kings.
The Predators will be at a disadvantage on special teams as they are ranked 29th (11.3%) on the power play while the Kings are ranked ninth (22.4%). The teams are a little more evenly matched on the penalty kill as the Preds are 23rd (76.9%) and the Kings are 27th (75.4%)
This is the first meeting of the year between the two teams. Last season the Predators swept the four games against the Kings, with the Kings only point coming in an overtime loss in April. The teams don't play again until March.
After the game, the Predators continue their road trip with a game in San Jose on Tuesday. The Kings end their brief home stand and head east for five games starting in Chicago on Monday night.
In Pred Land...
Dirk Hoag has the best preview of today's game at OnTheForecheck.
John Glennon has a story about injuries around the league and a visit to the Oakley Sunglasses factory with the team on Friday.
A very frustrated Eric Kent writes about the Ads loss last night at Short Shifts.
Mark Willoughby has his weekly Friday feature "My View."
Brandon Felder has a final wrap-up from the Preds-Ducks contest. Adam Brady does too (from the other view).
Forechecker has a post about Adam Sherlip's newest venture to promote hockey in the Himalayan state of Jammu & Kashmir. If you aren't familiar with Adam or his Hockey Foundation, check out an edition of POTGRadio from over the summer where Adam spent an entire hour with us.
Pierre LeBrun has a rare ESPN story on the Predators.
Around the NHL...
Tim Rosenthal has something that is a little hard to describe from the early rap era. He showed this to me earlier this week and I was at a loss to know what to do with it.
Here's an video interview with Chris Chelios from yesterday from OnTheWings.
From @gencarter via @scott_douglas UC Santa Cruz seeks a "Grateful Dead Archivist". Why can't every job title sound so awesome?
Finally, this girl needs to move from soccer to hockey and then see how tough she thinks she is then. Maybe women's soccer needs to consider an enforcer for each team.
Buddy Oakes for PredsOnTheGlass