News: Ryan Kesler, who was sporting a wrap on his right elbow, did not skate at practice Tuesday, Lance Pugmire of the Los Angeles Times reports. Analysis: Per the Orange County Register, Ryan Kesler's arm absorbed a Francois Beauchemin shot on Sunday, but the forward didn't seem too bothered by the issue afterward, so Tuesday's absence could turn out to be maintenance-related.
News: Matt Cullen (lower body) skated with the team Tuesday morning, but will not play later in the evening against the Canucks, John Glennon of The Tennessean reports. Analysis: Matt Cullen will sit for a fifth straight game while he tends to the injury. His return to the ice in some capacity suggests he could soon reenter the lineup, but he won't get his next chance to do so until Saturday's home date with the Stars.
News: Eric Nystrom (lower body) participated in Tuesday's morning skate, John Glennon of The Tennessean reports. Analysis: Eric Nystrom rotated in with the third line during the session, but he won't be a candidate to enter the lineup Tuesday versus the Canucks. Instead, the Predators would probably like to see Nystrom get in some more contact work during practices after he missed the previous 12 games with the injury. His eventual return will give the Preds an added dose of physicality in their bottom-six ranks, but he's not expect to offer many contributions in the fantasy realm.
News: GM David Poile said Tuesday that Shea Weber (lower body) will be out until at least Saturday's game against the Stars, John Glennon of The Tennessean reports. Analysis: As a result, Shea Weber will his third straight game when the Predators host the Canucks on Tuesday, but Poile seemed highly confident that the blueliner would be fully healthy by the time the postseason arrives. Weber has yet to resume skating since suffering the injury, so it's far from guaranteed at this time that he'll be able to play Saturday.
News: General manager David Poile said that James Neal (upper body) won't be able to play until at least Saturday against the Stars, John Glennon of The Tennessean reports. Analysis: While James Neal will remain out of the lineup for a ninth straight game Tuesday against the Canucks, it appears the Predators are confident that he'll be able to get at least a few matches under his belt before the start of the playoffs. The winger was able to participate in Tuesday's morning skate and should increase his on-ice activity in practices before the week draws to a close.
News: Pekka Rinne will draw the start in net Tuesday versus the Canucks, Willy Daunic of ESPN Radio Nashville reports. Analysis: Pekka Rinne has limited the Canucks to a grand total of two goals in his two outings this season, an achievement that's not overly surprising given his all-around dominance this season. With a robust 41-15-4 record supported by strong peripherals, Rinne is just two wins shy of matching his personal record (and the franchise record) for victories in a season.
News: Eddie Lack will start for the second straight night Tuesday against the Predators. Analysis: A road matchup against one of the league's best teams in Nashville might seem daunting to most goaltenders, but Eddie Lack has thrived in such circumstances this season. In his 18 outings away from Rogers Arena this season, Lack is 7-4-2 with a 2.40 GAA and .926 save percentage. He bettered those road numbers with a win Monday in St. Louis, during which he turned away 23 of 24 shot attempts.
News: Matt Cooke (sports hernia) participated in the three-on-three work during Monday's practice, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports. Analysis: No timetable has been set for his return, but Matt Cooke hopes to return before the end of the regular season so he can be a factor in the playoffs. Cooke has been out since Feb. 1 with the injury.
News: Martin St. Louis (knee) could return to action as soon as Thursday against the Wild, Andrew Gross of The Record reports. Analysis: Per the report, Martin St. Louis hopes to put in a full practice Wednesday and if all goes well, it sounds like Thursday could be a plausible target for him. Either way, a return appears to be on the horizon for St. Louis, who last suited up March 15.
News: Alex Prewitt of The Washington Post reports "there is a chance" that Dmitry Orlov will join the Capitals on their upcoming road trip, and he could end up making his season debut at some point during that trip. Analysis: Dmitry Orlov has had a terrible road to recovery following offseason wrist surgery and has only recently begun playing with AHL Hershey after being sent to the minors last week. The Capitals are hoping to have Orlov at the ready for the playoff run, but given the difficulty in his recovery, it's hard to say whether Orlov will be up to the task any time soon. However, should he return to the lineup and remain healthy, it should provide some assurance that he will be ready for next season, and thus improve his draft stock for the 2015-16 season.