Nashville remains in third place in the Central Division with six games left. The St. Louis Blues, who didn’t play Tuesday, can take over that spot Wednesday with at least one point against the Arizona Coyotes.
Boston brewing: After impeding the New York Islanders’ urgency Monday, the Predators failed to do the same against the Bruins, who began Tuesday as the Eastern Conference’s second wild-card team. The Predators’ recent run of strong first-period play ended because of a highly motivated Bruins team. Boston established its physical style early, staggering Nashville and controlling play to take a 2-0 lead into the first intermission. The Predators settled down in the second and third periods, but couldn’t outdo Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask, leading to their second loss in the past nine games (7-2-0).
Offense and defense: Entering Tuesday as the NHL’s highest-scoring team since the All-Star break with an average of more than three goals per game, Nashville didn’t find any offense against the Bruins until the third period. With less than 10 minutes remaining in regulation, Predators forward Craig Smith broke a 25-game goal drought with his first goal since Jan. 26. Two early goals notwithstanding, Predators goaltender Pekka Rinne was solid, keeping the team within reach after a rough start.
Fisher update: Predators captain Mike Fisher missed his fourth consecutive game with a lower-body injury. General manager David Poile told 102.5-FM on Tuesday afternoon that the team is hopeful Fisher could return “as soon as Thursday” against the Toronto Maple Leafs or this weekend at the latest. Fisher is listed as day-to-day.
Up next: Returning to Nashville for two games, the Predators host the Maple Leafs on Thursday at Bridgestone Arena. Face off is at 7 PM. Thunder Radio will bring you the broadcast as part of the Fifth Third Bank/Nashville Predators Radio Network.
Pete Weber’s Post Game Report