• Marcus Bender

Nashville Predators vs Arizona Coyotes Preview

Updated: Oct 4, 2020

Western Conference Series Preview - Nashville vs Arizona


Tale Of The Tape


Nashville

35-26-8

PP% 17.3 (25th) | 3.07 GF/G (16th)

PK% 76.1 (29th) | 3.10 GA/G (20th)


Arizona

33-29-8

PP% 19.2 (18th) | 2.71 GF/G (23rd)

PK% 82.7 (5th) | 2.61 GA/G (3rd)

Nashville vs Arizona (Season Series: 1-1-0)

Summary

This might be the “forgotten” series. Two teams which seem similiarly mediocre will seem to try to “outdefence” each other to death.

Goalies


Kuemper had an unbelievable run at the beginning of the season and had Vezina consideration before succumbing to an injury. Antti Raanta could change his name to “Prro Injuury”. The poor guy can’t seem to not get injured.

Pekka Rinne may have scored more goals than Martin Erat this season, but still managed to play himself out of a job. Rinne could very well be the "Lundvqist of the West". It's highly possible we will see Juuse Saros take the driver’s seat here.


Overall however, the advantage seems to be with Arizona and Kuemper here.

The “D” Game


Is it possible in a Series for neither team to score any goals? Will these teams just try to out defend each other to death?

The Preds PP


The Predators are already near the bottom of the league; and they are playing one of the best teams in the League on the PK. This bodes poorly for the Preds.

Arizona Drought


The ‘Yotes have gone 11-17-4 in 2020, and seem to have lost all momentum they once had. They seem worse with Hall on their Team. They seem like they are peddling in thin air.

Rise Of The Lizard King


Meanwhile, the Predators have been on the rise since replacing their coach. 16-12-1 in the John “Lizard King” Hynes has taken over. The malaise the team seemed to have in mid-November seems to have been replaced. Replaced with stoic cold reptile blood.

Kessel-raided


The ‘Yotes have two “Stars” on their team in Kessel and Hall. Neither of them have played up to their ability this season. Especially Kessel: 14 Goals, 24 Assists, 38 Points in 70 Games, and an ugly-looking -21. “The Thrill” looks like he’s ready to just grab another hot dog and call it a career.

Roman Dreamy


Roman Josi is the highest scoring player, and the handsomest player in this series, and it isn’t even close. He’s had a fantastic year and should get at least some Norris consideration. He is definitely the leader of the Preds. For the Preds to get through this Round, they will need him to be at the top of his game.

Conclusion

The Preds seem to have some momentum here. Who knows what momentum will mean in the middle of the summer after not having played for three months, but we still have to acknowledge this team seemed to be trending in the right direction under the Lizard King.


Arizona seems like they would be happy to continue playing golf all summer, and they probably will get the chance to do exactly that in short order.


Prediction


Nashville in 4.


More Stats


Goalies:

Nashville

Juuse Saros 17-12-4, .914, 2.70

Pekka Rinne 18-14-3, .895, 3.17


Arizona

Darcy Kuemper 16-11-2, .928, 2.22

Antti Raanta 15-14-2, .921, 2.63

Key Players:

Roman Josi 65 Points

Forsberg 48 Points


Nick Schmaltz 45 Points

Taylor Hall 27 Points (35 Games in Ari)

X Factor

Matt Duchene 42 Points: Which Matt Duchene will we seein the Playoffs?

Phil Kessel: What a dismal year, 38 Points in 70 Games, -21. But did he eat any hotdogs? Will he be better in the Playoffs?

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