Without Sakic, Avalanche go for third straight win

Colorado (12-12-0) at Nashville (12-10-2) 8:00 p.m. EST

NASHVILLE, Tennessee (Ticker) — Facing a six-week stretch
without their captain, the Colorado Avalanche hope their recent
offensive outburst continues.

Colorado goes for its third straight win without Joe Sakic when
it takes on the Nashville Predators on Thursday.

Sakic has been plagued with back injuries for much of the
season, missing nine of the last 12 games and only playing one
complete game during that stretch. It was announced Wednesday
the 39-year old center will miss six weeks with a herniated disk
in his back, an injury he suffered during a weight room session
last month.

The Avalanche have managed just fine without him, going 7-5-0,
including a 10-goal outburst over their last two contests.

Wojtek Wolski scored a pair of goals and Marek Svatos had three
assists in a 4-3 win over Tampa Bay, a game that saw goaltender
Andrew Raycroft make 17 saves in his first start since October

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Peter Budaj was back in net on Monday against Minnesota and
allowed five goals on just 17 shots, but Paul Stastny had two
goals and an assist as the Avs scored four second-period goals
and hung on for a 6-5 win.

Nashville backup netminder Pekka Rinne, who improved to 4-0 and
registered his first career shutout in a 2-0 win over Buffalo
Monday, is expected to get his third start in the last four
games according to The Tennessean.

Jason Arnott and J.P. Dumont scored goals just 2:33 apart midway
through the third period for the Predators, who will be looking
to snap a three-game home losing streak.