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Nash Daily: Predators Roadtripping To AZ, Caps Staying In D.C.



Photo of Cole Smith by John Russell/Nashville Predators

The Nashville Predators departed Nashville for Arizona yesterday where they will take on the Arizona Coyotes for the fourth and final time this season on Thursday night.

The Predators struggled against Arizona earlier this season having lost 7-5 at home on Nov. 10 and again 3-2 in Arizona on Jan. 20 before finally overcoming the Coyotes in their third meeting 5-4 in overtime at Bridgestone Arena on Feb. 10. Thursday’s head-to-head matchup is not terribly important as the Central Division rival is out of the playoff picture, but these two points are critical for Nashville as it’s just four points back of the Winnipeg Jets for third place in the division.

The injury bug keeps biting the Predators defensive unit, but most of the injuries are due to maintenance and are nothing serious. Jeremy Lauzon entered back into the lineup on Tuesday night against the Vegas Golden Knights, but his usual defensive partner, Alexandre Carrier, was sidelined for the game and listed a day-to-day with an upper body injury.

Spencer Stasnety is also day-to-day, while Dante Fabbro may be out for a bit longer with an upper body injury as he continues to work hard to get back into the lineup as quickly as possible.

In other news, Monumental Sports and Entertainment, the owner of the Washington Capitals and the NBA’s Washington Wizards headed by majority owner Ted Leonsis, have announced with Mayor of D.C. Muriel Bowser that the teams will remain playing at Capital One Arena in downtown D.C. after previously announcing a planned move to Northern Virginia earlier this season.

The mayor announced that the deal inked would keep the teams in D.C. until 2050, but further details have not yet been announced. When the proposal with Virginia had previously been disclosed, many thought D.C. would put up a fight to keep the teams as they are an economic bulwark for the district.

Both sides (D.C. and Virginia) have repeatedly accused the other of politics being the driver of conversations. But honestly it seems  like it had more to do with the tax breaks and economic incentives that would be granted to Monumental Sports and Entertainment. Everything’s a business, after all. While it would have been neat to see a new stadium in Virginia, the location of Capital One Arena in Chinatown is an iconic forum.

Nashville Hockey Now

Riding an 18-game point streak, the Predators are the NHL’s hottest team and one that no one wants to face.

Roman Josi has been an integral part in Nashville’s turnaround, and he’s starting to gain momentum in the Hart Trophy race.

Like Josi, Andrew Brunette has also been instrumental in the Predators’ recent success, which is why he should be getting strong consideration for the Jack Adams Award as the NHL’s top head coach.

After his third career shutout, and first since his rookie year, Kevin Lankinen may get some attention as a possible starter somewhere else next season.

Central Division Standings

  1. Dallas Stars — 45-19-9 99 points (9 games remaining)

  2. Colorado Avalanche — 46-21-5 97 points (10 games remaining)

  3. Winnipeg Jets — 44-22-6 94 points (10 games remaining)

  4. Nashville Predators – 43-25-4 90 points (10 games remaining)

  5. St. Louis Blues — 38-30-4 80 points (10 games remaining)

  6. Minnesota Wild – 34-28-9 77 points (11 games remaining)

  7. Arizona Coyotes 30-37-5 65 points (10 games remaining)

  8. Chicago Blackhawks — 21-46-5 47 points (10 games remaining)

Wild Card Standings (top 2 clinch playoff spot)

  1. Nashville Predators – 43-25-4 90 points (10 games remaining)

  2. Vegas Golden Knights 39-25-8 86 points (10 games remaining)

  3. St. Louis Blues — 38-30-4 80 points (10 games remaining)

  4. Minnesota Wild – 34-28-9 77 points (11 games remaining)

Around the NHL and National Hockey Now

Calgary Hockey Now: Huska’s Calgary Flames Have an Always Darkest Before the Dawn Complex

Colorado Hockey Now: Avalanche Skate: Annunen On Extension, Nichuskin Missing

Chicago Hockey Now: Jason Dickinson, Blackhawks Keep Winning the Trade That Sent Him To Chicago

Florida Hockey Now: Matthew Tkachuk: Florida Panthers ‘Are Fine. We’re Not Worried at All’

Philly Hockey Now: Flyers Can Address Backup Goalie Woes in Offseason (+)

Vegas Hockey Now:  Golden Knights Blow Lead, Settle For Point vs. Red-Hot Predators Coyotes officially eliminated form playoff contention

Follow Clay Brewer on Twitter/X: @ClayBrewer10

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