Kings Hope To Catch Predators In Nashville

(Sports Network) - The sizzling Nashville Predators will aim for a sixth consecutive victory tonight when they welcome the Los Angeles Kings to Bridgestone Arena. The Predators have won five straight and can record their first six-game winning streak since March 12-21 of last season. Nashville's recent hot stretch has helped the club climb to fourth in the Western Conference and the Preds are also just three points behind Detroit for the Central Division and conference lead.

Nashville played last night on the road and posted a 3-1 victory over the New Jersey Devils. Martin Erat scored twice and Anders Lindback continued his strong play with 15 saves in the win at Prudential Center. Steve Sullivan also tallied while Shea Weber and Ryan Suter added two assists each for the Predators. "I was just in the right spots at the right time," said Erat. "So long as I can help the team win it doesn't matter if I'm scoring goals or making plays on defense."

Lindback improved to 9-1-2 on the year with his fifth straight victory. He is 6-0-1 with a 1.43 GAA and an amazing .949 save percentage since regular starter Pekka Rinne went down with a knee injury. Nashville also enters tonight riding a five-game home winning streak and the Preds are 8-1-5 in the Music City this year. The Kings, meanwhile, have lost two of their last three games, but they still have a solid 4-1-1 mark in December. However, Los Angeles is just 6-9-0 as the guest this year and is playing the third test of a five-game road trip tonight.

After posting an impressive 5-0 victory in Detroit on Monday, Los Angeles allowed six goals in Thursday's loss in St. Louis. Alexander Steen scored the go-ahead goal with 2:53 left to play to help lift the Blues to the 6-4 victory over LA. Anze Kopitar and Dustin Brown both recorded one goal and one assist for Los Angeles. Wayne Simmonds and Ryan Smyth also tallied for the Kings, while Jonathan Quick made 25 saves in the loss.

"This is the first game in a while where we haven't played to the level that we can," Kopitar said. "We just have to get back to the basics." Los Angeles enters tonight with injury concerns at the blue line. The Kings played without Matt Greene (upper body) on Thursday and he is questionable for tonight along with defenseman Willie Mitchell, who suffered a lower-body injury in the loss to the Blues.

The Kings met the Predators earlier this year in LA and notched a 4-1 victory in that Nov. 6 game. LA has won two straight against Nashville after losing the previous seven meetings between the clubs. The Kings have still lost four out of six in the Music City.

For more Kings news and analysis, be sure to read the SB Nation blog Jewels From The Crown.

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