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Game day: Preds at Bruins preview

The Nashville Predators saw their winning streak end at five games on Thursday night, but the chance to start a new streak begins this afternoon when the Preds take on the Boston Bruins with a faceoff at 12 p.m. CT from TD Garden. Today’s match is the second of two encounters between the clubs this season; the Bruins shut out the Predators in a 2-0 final in December at Bridgestone Arena.

The Preds had won each of their five games in 2022 entering Thursday’s game against Buffalo, including a 5-4 overtime win over Colorado on Tuesday, but the Sabers prevailed by beating Nashville 4-1 in a match the home team said was not their best. Now, the Predators are excited for the next challenge today in Boston, but they won’t necessarily take the lessons of the loss to Buffalo with them, as Preds head coach John Hynes explained.

“You have different challenges through the year, especially with 82 games,” Hynes said after Friday’s practice in Nashville. “We came out of a game that was externally excited against Colorado, and it was a big emotional win. And coming from an emotional win to prepare for the next opponent, we didn’t make a pretty good job at that – any of us obviously – depending on how we performed, because we were outplayed The better team won the game [Thursday]. There are going to be other situations where we can come out of a rivalry game or a central division game or a real hard physical battle, and we are going to have to get back in place and be ready to face the next opponent. And we haven’t done a great job of that.

“So for me it’s a great experience that we can have the next time it happens, but for me I think the important thing is to focus on now that we have a different type of game. We have a [afternoon] game – how are we going to react to a game that we all collectively felt was not bringing the level of competition that we needed to be? And we’re up against a team that’s red hot, and that’s our next challenge. How do we respond to this challenge?

Preds forwards Filip Forsberg and Yakov Trenin both missed Thursday’s game after remaining on the NHL’s COVID-19 protocol list. Defender Mark Borowiecki was also out against Buffalo and is day to day with a lower body injury. The Predators will not hold a morning practice with today’s afternoon tee time.

Video: Coach Hynes presents Nashville vs Boston

The good ones :

Matt Duchene scored the Preds’ lone goal in Thursday’s loss — his third straight power play goal for Nashville. Duchene leads the club with 17 goals and is second in points (34) only behind the Preds captain Romain Josi (12g-26a) who has 38 points in 36 games this season. Mikael Granlund (5g-28a) has 33 points for the Preds, Ryan Johansen has 10 goals and 30 points and rookie forward Tanner Jeannot has 12 goals and 23 points. Goalie Juuse Saroswho was named NHL All-Star Thursday, is 20-10-1 in net for the Preds; david rittich is 3-1-1.

The opposition:

The Bruins have lost just once in eight tries in 2022, and that includes a four-game winning streak and a 3-2 win over Philadelphia on Thursday with a David Pastrnak hat trick. Brad Marchand leads the Bruins with 19 goals and 41 points, followed by Pastrnak (16g-14a) with 30 points and Patrice Bergeron (11g-17a) with 28 points. Goalkeeper Tuukka Rask, who just returned to the Bruins this week, won his season debut on Thursday night, while Linus Ullmark is 12-5-0 in the campaign.

Video: Philippe Tomasino Nashville vs. Boston previews

All-Time Meetings:

The Predators are 14-15-(1)-2 all-time against the Bruins, including a 4-8-(1)-2 on the road. Nashville last played Boston on Dec. 21, 2019, a 4-3 overtime win for the Predators with two goals from Roman Josi.

The Predators are 2-3-0 in their last five games at TD Garden. Nashville has won six of its last 11 games against Boston (6-5-0).

Notable against Boston:

Ryan Johansen has 13 points (4g-9a) in 17 career games against the Bruins. Johansen recorded three assists for Boston on Dec. 21, 2020. Roman Josi has five goals and 10 points in 17 career games against Boston.

Dante Fabbro played three seasons of college hockey for Boston University from 2016 to 2019, appearing in 111 games while posting 80 points (22g-58a), the most among team defensemen during that span.

Predators head coach John Hynes and assistant general manager/director of scouting Jeff Kealty both played college hockey at Boston University. Hynes and Kealty helped lead the Terriers to four straight Frozen Four appearances and the 1995 NCAA title.

Bruins forward Craig Smith played 661 games with Nashville from 2011 to 2020, scoring 162 goals and 330 points. Bruins forward Erik Haula played the 2020-21 season in Nashville and had 21 points (9g-12a) in 51 games.

Watch and listen:

Coverage of today’s 12 p.m. CT puck drop from Boston begins at 11:30 a.m. CT with the Predators Live! pre-match broadcast on Bally Sports South. Willy Daunic, Chris Mason and Lyndsay Rowley have the call on the television side, while Pete Weber and Hal Gill will broadcast on 102.5 The Game and the Predators Radio Network. Pre-game radio coverage begins at 11 a.m. with Darren McFarland. For nationwide broadcast information and channel locations, click here.