It seems appropriate that guys wearing red would come calling in the month of December. That's right Pred fans the hated and despised Red Wings are in town for a 7:00 game at the Sommet Center (why do I put where the game is? Seriously...when was the last time a hockey game was played at Municipal?). Everyone knows that when these teams square off fans of both teams are in treated to a special evening of hockey.
While every team loves to play and beat the Wings doing so has become a huge deal here in Nashville. Since this teams inception the Predators have been looking up at the Red Wings. Each year trying to put a squad on the ice that can compete with this perennial power. So far this years edition of the Preds is doing a decent job going 1-0-1 in two contests with the Wings (both games were settled by scores of 3-2 with the first game going to a shootout in Detroit). The Wings continue to treat us like a little brother giving us little respect on or off the ice, even after they suffer a loss to us.
Middle Tennessee is filled with a ton of Michigan transplants due to the location of the Saturn plant here (the plant was initially staffed with many out of work auto workers from Michigan who moved to gain employment) and the first time the Preds hosted the Red Wings on December 23rd 1998 it was tough to tell who the home team was. The sea of red was overwhelming and myself being a transplant was a bit torn. I had begun to like these guys called the Predators but had grown up loving the Wings...but that night it all changed. I saw an over matched Predators team fight and claw and win 5-3 over the powerful Wings. From that moment on I was a Preds fan.
The vast sea of red has diminished greatly over the years and my Predators have begun to show some fight to their older brother and even pushed the Wings for the division title into March of last year. No longer can the Wings overlook a date the Predators on the schedule and the trips to Nashville no longer seem like the home away from home that they were for several years.
Tonight's Game: The Wings are riding a hot streak winning six in a row including yesterday's 5-2 beat down of the high powered Carolina Hurricanes and recent 5-0 thumping of the Minnesota Wild. The Preds were able to hold Zetterberg in check during the first two meetings of the year but this guy has been on fire lately. If he gets going it could be long night. A goaltending controversy seems to be gone in Motown with both backstops playing great and rotating and I expect we may see Osgood tonight after Hasek went last night.
Yes the guys in Red are coming to town...let's send them home with a loss.
I'll be there tonight...will you?