Finished PNC Arena
The Nashville Predators endured a dreadful stretch of 10 consecutive losses away from home but have turned things around as they prepare to make the final stop of a six-game road trip at the Carolina Hurricanes on Sunday afternoon. Nashville has earned points in all five games on the trek, sandwiching 4-3 overtime losses at Detroit and Columbus around three straight wins.
The Predators were denied a fourth consecutive victory despite a valiant comeback, scoring twice in a 38-second span to force overtime against the Blue Jackets on Thursday night. "So far this road trip has been big for us," goaltender Pekka Rinne told reporters after Nashville extended its point streak to seven games overall. The Hurricanes are on a tear of their own with six wins in the last seven games - the lone loss coming at NHL-best Tampa Bay. "This is a really tough stretch. A lot of good teams," Carolina captain Justin Williams told reporters. "We need to make sure we're ready to go."
TV: 12:30 p.m. ET, FS Tennessee (Nashville), FS Southeast (Carolina)
ABOUT THE PREDATORS (27-15-4): Nashville regularly features one of the top blue-line corps in the NHL and Mattias Ekholm is among the reasons, becoming the third defenseman in franchise history to register four consecutive games with multiple points. Ekbolm, riding a five-game point streak, notched his career-best 28th assist Thursday and needs one point to match his career high of 35 established in 2015-16. Rinne started a back-to-back Wednesday and Thursday, including the 600th game of his career due to Juuse Saros' illness, but the backup netminder was back on the ice at Saturday's practice.
ABOUT THE HURRICANES (21-18-5): Despite a 12-game goal drought earlier in the season, Finnish center Sebastian Aho leads Carolina in goals (18), assists (29) and points (47) after scoring twice as part of a seven-point night from the No. 1 line in Friday's 4-3 win over Buffalo. Williams went 14 consecutive games without a goal earlier in the season but he has heated up since the calendar flipped to 2019 by tallying in four straight contests to extend his point streak to six games. Micheal Ferland, moved back to the top line and the subject of trade rumors, is coming off his first career three-point game.
1. Predators F Viktor Arvidsson has six goals in his last seven games.
2. Hurricanes G Petr Mrazek is a perfect 6-0-0 with a 2.00 goals-against average versus Nashville.
3. Rinne is 6-2-1 with a 2.05 goals-against average versus Carolina.
PREDICTION: Hurricanes 4, Predators 3 Bet Now
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