Programming note – Sharks-Predators coverage starts today at 12:30 p.m. with Sharks Pregame Live on CSN California
WHERE THEY STAND
Sharks: 40-19-7, 87 points, 1st Pacific Division
Predators: 32-24-11, 75 points, 3rd Central Division
PREGAME NEWS AND NOTES
***Fresh off of their 40th win of the season, the Sharks will host Nashville in the second of a six-game homestand. They have won five of the last six overall (5-1-0).
On Thursday against Washington, it was a pair of power play goals that keyed a 4-2 win over league-leading Washington. Previously, that unit had been just 2-for-23 over the last nine games.
“I think we pinpointed some of the things in a pretty small package what we needed to fix that we thought could start to help us,” Pete DeBoer said. “The guys went out and did that.”
***Nashville remains in playoff position in third place in the Central Division, but has dropped its last four (0-2-2). It fell in a shootout decision to Anaheim on Tuesday, 4-3, and suffered a 3-2 overtime loss to the Kings on Thursday.
All three of Los Angeles’ goals were scored on the power play. Nashville has allowed six power play goals-against in 11 opportunities during its four-game skid.
"Needs to be better," Predators coach Peter Laviolette told reporters regarding the penalty kill.
***This is the second of two meetings between the teams, which faced each other last season in an entertaining second round Stanley Cup playoff matchup. The Sharks beat Nashville at home on Oct. 29, 4-1. They face off again at Bridgestone Arena in exactly two weeks.
KEEP AN EYE ON...
Sharks: Logan Couture. The second line center has arguably been the Sharks’ best player since the bye week, with four goals and three assists for seven points in his last six games. He scored both of the Sharks’ power play goals on Thursday, and 10 of his 23 on the season have come with a man advantage, tying him for 12th in the NHL.
Predators: Filip Forsberg. The Preds’ forward has been among the league’s hottest scorers of late, with 11 goals in his last nine games. The NHL’s second star of the month of February has 24 goals in his last 37 games, and is tied for second in the NHL with three shorthanded tallies. He’s tied with Ryan Johansen for the team lead in points (51).
Jannik Hansen – Joe Thornton – Joe Pavelski
Patrick Marleau – Logan Couture – Mikkel Boedker
Joonas Donskoi – Tomas Hertl – Melker Karlsson
Micheal Haley – Chris Tierney – Joel Ward
Paul Martin – Brent Burns
Marc-Edouard Vlasic – Justin Braun
Brenden Dillon – Dylan DeMelo
Martin Jones (starter)
Filip Forsberg – Ryan Johansen – Viktor Arvidsson
Kevin Fiala – Mike Fisher – Craig Smith
Colin Wilson – Calle Jarnkrok – James Neal
Cody McLeod – Colton Sissons – Austin Watson
Mattias Ekholm – P.K. Subban
Matt Irwin – Roman Josi
Anthony Bitetto – Yannick Weber
Sharks: David Schlemko (lower body) is out.
Predators: P.A. Parenteau (finger) and Ryan Ellis (lower body) are day-to-day. Miikka Salomaki (lower body) is out.
“I’d lie if I said it wasn’t nice. It felt good. Not just that we scored, it felt like we were going to score before the power play even started. … We kind of felt that intensity throughout the group, and it showed tonight.” – Joe Pavelski, on the Sharks’ two power play goals on Thursday against the Capitals