Thanks to Danielle Browne for our picture of Peter Forsberg.
Mike Fisher will play against Peter Forsberg tonight in the highlight of today's NHL action. And oh, by the way, they will bring the Nashville Predators (29-18-7) and the Colorado Avalanche (25-24-6) along with them to fill out the rosters when the puck is dropped at the sold out Bridgestone arena at 7 p.m. Central.
The number one key to the game tonight for the Predators is to overcome all the Mike Fisher hype that has run rampant in Smashville for the last 48 hours and play a good solid hockey game against a team that is mired in a six game losing streak and has not looked good in the process.
As David Poile clearly stated Fisher "is not a savior" but should put the team back in the position it was in before Matt Lombardi went down in the Preds' second game of the season. Don't judge Fisher by what he does tonight because he is yet to have a practice with the full squad.
Colorado avoided bringing it's "counter-hype" by having the return of Forsberg last night in Columbus where the Avs lost 3-1 and did not look good in doing so. Adrian Dater has a postgame video of Foppa's reaction to his first game back. He already appeared to be playing at a higher level than the rest of the team that has payed all year.
It seems like it has been a long time since the Predators big 4-1 win in Detroit on Wednesday night. Hopefully, that will help them forget that in spite of two wins over Detroit in the last week that they are mired in a 2-4-1 slum and really need to put together a win streak to regain lost ground in the tough Western Conference.
The Predators have fallen to sixth in the west (65 points) while the Avalanche have dropped all the way to 14th (56points) during their respective slides.
Pekka Rinne (19-14-5, 2.08, .930) will be in goal for the Predators while it appears Peter Budaj (12-9-3, 3.03, .898) will start the for the second night in a row with Craig Anderson out until Monday dealing with personal issue (birth of a child per Scott Laughlin of XM's power play). John Grahame (0-0-0, 0.00, .000) is also available for the Avs.
After tonight's game, the Predators have a tough week ahead, albeit at home, with San Jose, Vancouver, and Phoenix all visiting Bridgestone Arena.
Other previews come from Amanda DiPaolo, Chris Burton, Predatorial, Paul McCann, The Tennessean, and Predators.com.
For previews from Denver check out Adrian Dater, Aaron Musick, Mile High Hockey, The Avalanche Guild, Jibblescribbits, and AvsHockeyPodcast.
In Pred Nation...
Josh Cooper has post morning skate quotes from Mike Fisher and yes, Carrie Underwood-Fisher will be at the game (with bells on).
After yesterday's conference call with Mike Fisher there were stories from Bryan Mullen, David Boclair, and Amanda Dipaolo.
Cellblock 303 has an episode of the 303:30 with Kevin Allen and includes audio of the Mike Fisher conference call.
Sam Page has another look at Mike Fisher's contract and what it means for the Predators' future.
Bryan Mullen has a new post this morning on the Preds' eagerness to see Mike Fisher on the ice.
Ryan Porth discusses Pekka Rinne's chase for the Vezina at The Fourth Period. He also takes a look at how the West may respond to the three big trades that have gone down so far.
Rob Higgins says that Mike Fisher is the perfect fit in Nashville and has the facts to back it up. Chris Botta also thinks it's a good deal for all involved. Kevin Allen likes the trade for off the ice reasons too.
The View from 111 takes a look at all the attributes that Mike Fisher brings to the Predators.
David Singleton looks at the Predators week and the Fisher trade at Hockey Independent.
The flip side of the story comes from Ben McCoy of Inside Hockey who sounds like he lost a family member in the trade.
Barry Trotz was on HNIC Radio with Jeff Marek talking about the Fisher Trade. (H/T to Predlines for the find)
Puck Daddy Radio had Shea Weber on as a guest yesterday. Listen here.
Dirk Hoag is concerned about the glut of forwards on the Predators if everyone returns to health.
Shea Weber spoke with Bryan Mullen about the Fisher trade and seems happy with it.
Chris Burton breaks down David Legwand's goal from the games with the Wings.
Chris Link of Puck and Punk appeared on the Up the Pucks podcast from Buffalo.
Predatorial takes a look at the Predators' power play woes.
The Gnashvegas Gala raised over $100,000 for the Predator Foundation on Thursday night. Here are some pictures.
NHL.com has a good look at Blake Geoffrion's recent surge.
The Chicago Wolves beat the Milwaukee Admirals 5-2 last night in a less than stellar performance by the Ads.
In a simi-Preds related story, J R Lind has a neat Valentines Day story about his year long romance of @janeqpublic aka Olivia.
Around the NHL...
Ryan Porth has all the videos and fights from last night's 8-3 Isles-Pens debacle on Long Island,his Trophy Tracker updated. Several races have tightened up while others haven't.
"The Fighter" Micky Ward dropped the ceremonial puck at last night's Wings-Bruins game. If you haven't seen the movie, you should.
Jas Faulkner announces that Alexander Ovechkin will play the role of "Baby" in the upcoming Coen Brothers remake of Dirty Dancing.
Rick Jeanneret has another great call to end the Sabres-Panthers game. No one does it better.
Down Goes Brown has a primer on "bland-speak" as perfected in the NHL.
Congrats to Launy and Dahlia at Hockey 54 for their new sponsorship by Booster Juice!
Ex-Pred Dan Hamhuis is joining the concussion parade and will be out indefinitely.
PHT has the news that an agreement to appear on 24/7 will be a part of Winter Classic participation in the future. That is great news.
Adrian Dater has his five players most likely to be dealt at the deadline and Peter Forsberg heads the list.
One more city Counsel meeting is needed in Glendale to tweak the Coyotes lease before the bonds go on sale to complete the deal.
Odds and Ends...
Neighbors in Omaha are upset with a woman that is feeding wild turkeys at her house. I've never heard of folks being this upset about feeding birds in the winter.
Here's ten tips for administrators for the new Facebook design.
Buddy Oakes for PredsOntheGlass