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Predators at Panthers preview |

PREDATORS (30-18-4) at PANTHERS (20-20-8)

7 p.m. ET; FS-F, FS-TN, NHL.TV


The Game

The Florida Panthers will seek their fourth straight victory when they host the Nashville Predators at BB&T Center on Friday.

The Panthers, who have outscored opponents 13-5 in three consecutive wins following a seven-game losing streak (0-5-2) likely will be without centers Derick Brassard and Riley Sheahan, who they acquired along with three draft picks in a trade with the Pittsburgh Penguins for forwards Nick Bjugstad and Jared McCann on Friday.

Florida will play their first game since Jan. 21; the Panthers took their League-mandated five-day break after the 2019 Honda NHL All-Star Weekend.

The Predators look for their third win in a row after going 1-3-1 in their previous five games and will play for the first time since Jan. 23. They also just completed their five-day break.


Players to watch

Predators center Ryan Johansen has seven points (one goal, six assists) in his past six games.

Panthers forward Frank Vatrano has six points (three goals, three assists) in a three-game goal and point streak.


They said it

“We’re in a good spot in the standings right now. We still feel there’s lots to improve on in our game. We need to keep building, get better and better here as we get closer to the playoffs.” — Predators defenseman Dan Hamhuis

“We have to be one of the best teams in the League in February to give ourselves a chance. We’re recharged. There’s a job at hand. We’re healthy, we’re fresh. Everything is positive right now.” — Panthers coach Bob Boughner


Predators projected lineup

Filip Forsberg — Ryan Johansen — Viktor Arvidsson

Kevin FialaColton SissonsCraig Smith

Calle JarnkrokNick BoninoColin Blackwell

Ryan HartmanFrederick GaudreauRocco Grimaldi

Roman JosiP.K. Subban

Mattias EkholmRyan Ellis

Dan Hamhuis — Matt Irwin

Juuse Saros

Pekka Rinne

Scratched: Yannick Weber

Injured: Zac Rinaldo (undisclosed), Miikka Salomaki (upper body), Kyle Turris (lower body)

Suspended: Austin Watson


Panthers projected lineup

Frank Vatrano — Aleksander BarkovEvgenii Dadonov

Jonathan HuberdeauVincent TrocheckMike Hoffman

Denis MalginHenrik BorgstromJayce Hawryluk

Micheal HaleyColton SceviourTroy Brouwer

Keith YandleAaron Ekblad

Mike MathesonMark Pysyk

Ian McCoshenJosh Brown

Roberto Luongo

James Reimer

Scratched: Derick Brassard, Riley Sheahan, MacKenzie Weegar

Injured: Derek MacKenzie (shoulder)


Status report

Saros, who made an NHL career-high 47 saves in a 2-1 victory against the Vegas Golden Knights on Jan. 23, likely will start. … With Brassard and Sheahan not likely to be available, Haley and Brouwer each will be back in the lineup for the first time in five games. … Weegar was activated from injured reserve after missing three games with a concussion, but will not play.


Stat pack

Nashville is 0-for-25 on the power play in its past seven games. … Luongo is three wins from tying Ed Belfour (481) for third place on the NHL’s all-time list. Luongo also is three games from tying Patrick Roy (1,029) for second place all-time.

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