Final OT

Series (Game 6 of 6)

Nashville leads 5-1

Game 1: Saturday, November 21st
Blue Jackets3Final
Game 2: Thursday, December 10th
Blue Jackets3Final
Game 3: Monday, December 14th
Blue Jackets3
Game 4: Thursday, December 31st
Blue Jackets1
Game 5: Tuesday, January 26th
Blue Jackets3
Game 6: Saturday, March 20th
Blue Jackets0Final

Blue Jackets 0

(29-31-12, 70 pts)

Predators 1

(41-26-5, 87 pts)

8:00 PM ET, March 20, 2010

Bridgestone Arena, Nashville, Tennessee

1 2 3 OT T
CBJ 0 0 0 00
NSH 0 0 0 11

P. Rinne (Predators - G): Saves: 33, Save Pct.: 1.000

S. Mason (Blue Jackets - G): Saves: 30, Save Pct.: .968

C. Franson (Predators - D): Goals: 1, Assists: 0

Blue Jackets-Predators Preview


The Nashville Predators are in position to return to the playoffs after missing out last season. A visit from the Columbus Blue Jackets could further help their cause.

Trying for a fifth consecutive victory, the Predators also look to continue their home dominance over the Blue Jackets on Saturday night.

Nashville (40-26-5) reached the playoffs four straight seasons before falling short in 2008-09, but is doing all it can to return this year.

The Predators, who matched their win total from last season with a 5-0 home rout of Minnesota on Thursday, have won four in a row and are seventh in the Western Conference but one point out of fifth place.

"It is going to be so tough so we can't slip up for any games," forward Patric Hornqvist told the Predators' official Web site.

Nashville hasn't slipped at home against Columbus (29-31-11) in almost four years. The Predators have won 13 in a row over the Blue Jackets in Nashville -- the NHL's longest active home winning streak against a single opponent -- since losing 3-1 on April 3, 2006.

While Nashville has outscored Columbus 50-26 during that run, it's needed a pair 4-3 shootout victories to beat the Blue Jackets at Bridgestone Arena this season. Eleven of the teams' 12 meetings overall have been decided by two goals or less, prompting Nashville coach Barry Trotz to be cautious going into this contest.

"We're trying to look forward and trying to see what will happen at the end of the game," said Trotz, whose team is 4-1-0 versus the Blue Jackets this season. "We're focusing on Saturday. It will be a good test for us."

Pekka Rinne was not tested often against Minnesota, stopping 17 shots for his fifth shutout of the season and second in four starts. Rinne, who has a 1.22 goals-against average during his four-game winning streak, is 4-0-0 with a 2.83 GAA at home versus the Blue Jackets.

Hornqvist had a goal with an assist and Martin Erat added two assists Thursday for the Predators, who've outscored their opponents 13-5 during the four-game winning streak.

Erat has three goals and three assists in four games versus Columbus this season.

Though the Blue Jackets are second-to-last in the West and on the verge of missing the playoffs, they've won two in a row and four of five after rallying for a 4-2 home win over the Wild on Friday.

After missing four games with a lower-body injury, captain Rick Nash had two goals and Kristian Huselius scored in his third straight game as Columbus posted four unanswered goals after trailing 2-0.

"We're making the right moves. Obviously, it's a bit late," Nash said. "Momentum from the end of this year can really carry on to next year."

Huselius scored one of his 20 goals and added three assists against the Predators this season.

Columbus' Steve Mason could be back in net after being given the night off Friday. He snapped a three-game losing streak against Nashville by making 29 saves in a 3-2 win Jan. 26.