Matt Cullen was on the Wild’s side last season when he scored a game-winner vs. Nashville. This season he plays for the Predators.
MARK HUMPHREY • Associated Press,
Wild gameday at Nashville
- Article by: Michael Russo
- Star Tribune
- October 7, 2013 - 10:17 PM
7 p.m. AT NASHVILLE • FSN, 100.3-FM
Preview: It’s a battle between the only two winless teams in the Central Division. The 0-0-2 Wild hasn’t gone three games to start the season without a win since opening 0-4-1 in 2000-01. The Wild is 1-3-2 in its past six visits to Nashville and hasn’t won a game in regulation there since Dec. 5, 2009. The past three games have gone to a shootout (Wild is 1-2).
Players to watch: Predators C Matt Cullen will make his home debut. Cullen scored the shootout winner for Minnesota last season in Nashville. Wild D Ryan Suter, who left Nashville for Minnesota via free agency, was booed throughout. Predators D Seth Jones, fourth overall in June’s draft, might be paired with Suter’s former partner, Shea Weber. Wild LW Matt Cooke has had a strong start, scoring on his first shift opening night against Los Angeles and drawing two penalties against Anaheim that led to Zach Parise and Jason Pominville power-play goals.
Numbers: The Wild leads the NHL with a .637 faceoff winning percentage and is tied for third in shots against per game (24.0). … Wild C Kyle Brodziak is third in the NHL in the faceoff circle (. 700) and C Mikko Koivu is fifth (. 667). Predators C Paul Gaustad leads the NHL (. 778). … The Predators have scored three goals in their two losses.
Injuries: Wild C Charlie Coyle (knee) and LW Mike Rupp (knee) are out. LW Zach Parise left Monday’s practice sick but is on the trip and expected to play. Predators D Roman Josi (concussion) and F Viktor Stalberg (shoulder) are out.
© 2013 Star Tribune