National Hockey League
Preview
Nashville at Washington
When: 12:30 PM ET, Saturday, March 28, 2015
Where: Verizon Center, Washington, District Of Columbia


The Nashville Predators appear to have regained their footing following an ugly slide and go for their fourth consecutive victory when they visit the Washington Capitals on Saturday. After losing nine of 11 games (2-8-1) and blowing a sizable lead in the Central Division, the Predators have reclaimed first place and hold a one-point lead over St. Louis. Nashville is coming off a pair of impressive victories, knocking off Atlantic Division powers Montreal and Tampa Bay.

Washington has also turned things around following a 3-6-0 slide, winning four of its past five to draw within one point of third-place Pittsburgh in the Metropolitan Division. The Capitals own a five-point edge for the second wild card in the East but seven of their final eight opponents are in contention for the playoffs. The Predators have lost their last four visits to Washington but won the last two meetings overall, including a 4-3 victory on Jan. 16 in Capitals coach Barry Trotz's return to Nashville.

TV: 12:30 p.m. ET, FSN Tennessee (Nashville), CSN Washington

ABOUT THE CAPITALS (40-24-10): Washington eked out a 3-2 win over New Jersey on Thursday after allowing the tying tally in the final minute of overtime, leaving Trotz in a foul mood with a back-to-back upcoming against Nashville and the New York Rangers. "As I said to the guys, if we play that way in the next two games, it won't be pretty for us," said Trotz, who was the only coach Nashville ever had prior to his dismissal in 2014. Eric Fehr halted an eight-game point drought with his 19th goal - two shy of his career high (2009-10).

ABOUT THE PREDATORS (46-21-8): Filip Forsberg was the clear front-runner for the Calder Trophy until a late-season swoon that has seen him score only once in 14 games, but he'll always serve as a reminder to Washington as the one who got away. The Capitals shipped Forsberg to Nashville at the trade deadline in 2013 in exchange for Martin Erat, who wound up scoring twice in 62 games with Washington. "He's having a hell of a year, Trotz said of Forsberg, who has 22 goals and 56 points. "He's a tremendous player, a tremendous draft choice for us. I was on the other side when that trade was made."

OVERTIME

1. Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin, who has a league-high 47 goals, has scored eight times in 10 games versus Nashville.

2. Predators G Pekka Rinne is three wins shy of his career high (43, 2011-12).

3. Capitals F Tom Wilson was fined $2,000 by the NHL on Friday for embellishment during a game against Minnesota on March 19.

PREDICTION: Capitals 3, Predators 2
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away Day Night Div
Nashville 46-21-3-5 W3 28-7-1-1 18-14-2-4 5-2-0-2 41-19-3-3 15-6-2-2
Washington 40-24-6-4 W1 21-11-2-3 19-13-4-1 5-3-1-0 35-21-5-4 15-8-4-0
Last Meeting
Nashville Washington
Date Away Home Shots Saves PP Shots Saves PP
1/16/15 WAS 3 NAS 4 30 31 1-4 34 26 2-3
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Total Points Player  
Nashville S. Jones 2
Washington N. Backstrom 2
Goals Player  
Nashville J. Neal 2
Washington A. Ovechkin 2
Assists Player  
Nashville V. Bartley 1
Washington N. Backstrom 2
Saves Player  
Nashville C. Hutton 31
Washington B. Holtby 26
Season
Total Points Player  
Nashville M. Ribeiro 59
Washington A. Ovechkin 76
Goals Player  
Nashville C. Smith 25
Washington A. Ovechkin 50
Assists Player  
Nashville M. Ribeiro 45
Washington N. Backstrom 57
Saves Player  
Nashville P. Rinne 1636
Washington B. Holtby 1779
Quickchart Matchup
Nashville Off vs  Washington Def
2.77 GF
2.41 GA
31.8 Shots
28.9 Shots
39 PP
45 PK
Washington Off vs  Nashville Def
2.85 GF
2.33 GA
29.8 Shots
28.5 Shots
54 PP
41 PK