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Nashville Predators

Good News, Bad News For the Predators Defense



Photos of Alex Carrier, left, and Jeremy Lauzon by John Russell/Nashville Predators

Prior to Tuesday’s game against the Vegas Golden Knights, the Nashville Predators got some bad news: yet another one of their defensemen is injured.

The team announced that Alex Carrier would miss the Vegas game with an upper-body injury. However, a bit of good news came shortly after when Jeremy Lauzon, who was announced as a game-time decision after morning skate, took the ice for warmups, signaling his return from a lower-boy injury that had kept him out since March 16 and caused him to miss the last three games.

It’s not known the extent of Carrier’s injury or if he’s expected to miss more than a game. Some extended rest could be good for the 27-year-old, who’s taken the second-most hits (154) in the NHL this season behind only Toronto’s Jake McCabe (159).

Carrier has four goals an 19 points through 66 games this season. He has a plus-7 rating and has averaged 18:41 of ice time per game.

Because Carrier and Lauzon essentially swapped placed on the injured list, Marc Del Gaizo’s call up still qualifies as an emergency recall with the Predators still below six healthy defensemen, and it doesn’t count against Nashville’s three remaining recalls.

Del Gaizo has averaged 17:04 of ice time per game in his second stint with the Predators. He’s tallied four shots on goal and seen a little over four combined minutes of penalty-kill time.

Both Dante Fabbro (out 2-3 weeks with an upper-body injury) and Spencer Stastney (week-to-week with an upper-body injury) have been skating with the team, but no further information has been given on their possible returns.

Lauzon’s return it also good news for those hoping to see him break Matt Martin’s NHL record for single-season hits (382). He’s just 56 hits away from breaking Martin’s record and needs to average 51 hits per game over Nashville’s final 11 games to do so. Lauzon, who has 327 hits, broke Tanner Jeannot’s previous franchise record (318 hits) earlier this season.

Follow Michael Gallagher on X/Twitter @MGsports_

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