Stars at Predators
A pair of teams that finally cracked the win column will square off when the Dallas Stars visit the Nashville Predators on Thursday night in a matchup of Central Division rivals. The Stars earned their first victory with a 4-2 win over Detroit on Tuesday, the same night Nashville used a stirring comeback to knock off Philadelphia.
Ken Hitchcock, in his second tour of duty behind the Dallas bench, earned his 782nd win to move into a tie with Al Arbour for third place on the all-time list. "I was thinking on the bench that we've played three great hockey games, and it would have felt poorly to not finish this off," Hitchcock said. "I thought this was the best balance we've had. This looked like something you could really build on." The Predators appeared headed for their third loss in as many games, giving up five unanswered goals before scoring twice in the final 77 seconds to stun the Flyers. It provided a fitting end to a home opener in which Nashville raised its Western Conference championship banner from last season.
TV: 8 p.m. ET, FSN Southwest (Dallas), FSN Tennessee (Nashville)
ABOUT THE STARS (1-2-0): One reason for Hitchock's satisfaction with his team's play is the pressure applied by Dallas, which has unleashed 119 shots on goal through the first three games. Defenseman John Klingberg, who dropped to 36 points last season after scoring 48 in 2015-16, is off to a fast start with goals in back-to-back games and four points overall. Ben Bishop, injured in the season opener, earned his first win with the Stars by making 23 saves.
ABOUT THE PREDATORS (1-2-0): Standout forward Filip Forsberg led the charge back from a two-goal deficit by scoring twice in the third period, including the game-winner with 35.6 seconds to play. Forsberg sandwiched two goals around a tying tally by Scott Hartnell, who also scored twice in the contest. "He's one of the best guys in front of the net," Forsberg said of Hartnell. "You see that on the first (goal). He's just shooting for anything and it goes in."
1. Nashville won three of five meetings last season while Dallas was victorious in four of five in 2015-16.
2. Bishop is 1-3-1 with a 3.56 goals-against average against the Predators.
3. Forsberg had two goals and two assists in the five games last season versus Dallas.