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And so, Kevin Fiala season has ended. But the Predators season is alive and well! They have a 1-0 series lead on the Blues, the first ever series lead in the 2nd round of the playoffs. How that for a silver lining? Given that Fiala is done for the year, what do the Predators do to replace him? Here are some viable options for the Preds to resolve Fiala absence in the lineup. Pontus AbergWe know very little about the Pontus Aberg absence from the lineup on Wednesday. He was curiously a healthy scratch and it seems like maybe a coaching decision. He didn appear to have an injury creep up in the series against the Blackhawks Calle Jarnkrok Jersey, so it would appear that Aberg is completely capable of stepping in to play. Aberg was very good in the four games against Chicago. In four playoff games, he 4th among all Nashville forwards in Corsi-For per sixty minutes at 61.46, which puts him behind Smith, Fiala, and Arvidsson. He plays a very similar game to those guys and with Fiala out he will be sorely needed. So why didn he play Wednesday? No clue. Obviously the coaching staff could not have foreseen that Fiala would get injured, but the decision to play McLeod and Fiddler on the 4th line instead of getting Aberg more time is curious at best. My only guess is that the Narrative That Will Not Die found its way into the minds of the coaching staff once again. You know this one, the whole e need someone to go out and pound on the Blues just to show them we mean business” or even worse, the whole e need someone to go out and punch some guys, just so they don get too touchy-feely with our top forwards.” McLeod can do that, Aberg can. Surely by now we all know this is a narrative that DOES NOT ADD UP, mostly because there is a PUCK out on the ice that is literally bouncing into Nashville net more often when guys like McLeod and Fiddler are out there than when they are not Viktor Arvidsson Jersey. Anyways, Aberg deserves to play in Fiala absence, assuming there isn some undisclosed problem we don know about. Craig SmithSmith has been battling an injury since Game 3 of the Chicago series, but recently has been skating in practice.
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