Every smug face at the gym today looked like Steen…and forced me to turn away or risk imminent assault. At the gas station, a fifty something year old man with a St. Louis Rams hat walked to his truck…I suppressed the temptation of spraying him with the gas pump and launching a match. I must manage this anger at the 6-4 loss Thursday night. Medicine lies in tonight’s game.

The Predators. They are 8-0-2 in their last 10. Hunchback…blowback…camelback…Lindback, that’s the misbegotten name of Nashville’s goaltender who has danced with success the past several games. Bernier is expected to start for our soldiers. He is at the very center of my prayers. His success is the Kings’ success or Murray may ride Quick into the ground like he did last season.

Nashville touts 40 points, 6 of which are of the OT variety. They have played two more games than the Kings. Their powerplay sucks, their penalty killing is right there with ours and they otherwise match up pretty well with L.A. They also possess the no talent punk my fist to his face, Shane O’Brien, and pretty slick forwards in Steve Sullivan, Martin Erat and Cal O’Reilly. On defense is my favorite Pred, Shea Weber.

We don’t have Mitchell. I am still unclear as to whether we have Matt Greene. That’s a #2 and potentially our #5 off the defensive roster. Poni heads to the fourth line, which is amusing because two good shifts will get him right back to the third.

Will the Kings score first and gain the momentum? Will Kopitar and Brown continue their torrid scoring pace? Will Williams and Stoll regain their scoring touch? Which Drew Doughty will show up? Will Jack bring the mother f’ing Johnson on both ends of the ice? Will Clifford drop them with TooToo? Will Bernier shine brighter than hatchback? Will we win so I can forget about Thursday?

I think we will and I do know this. If the Kings lose tonight, God help the first bastard I see wearing a cowboy hat or humming a Garth Brooks tune.