• Preds' Neal Returns To Practice

    News: James Neal returned to practice Monday, Brooks Bratten of NHL.com reports.
    Analysis: James Neal was reportedly held out of the third period of Wednesday's 5-2 preseason win over the Lightning for precautionary reasons, so it's encouraging to see him return to a full practice. He's expected to return to a top-six role in his second season with the Predators in 2015-16.
  • Preds' Neal Strikes Twice In Game 6 Loss

    News: James Neal scored a pair of goals, dished out six hits and collected four PIM in Saturday's series-ending Game 6 loss to Chicago.
    Analysis: While the Predators may be eliminated from the playoffs, James Neal finished the postseason red-hot, recording back-to-back multi-point outings and scoring in three straight games. The 27-year-old was productive throughout the postseason, firing a whopping 25 shots on goal and notching eight PIM. He'll look to build on this strong finish when he enters his second season with Nashville in 2015-16.
  • Preds' Neal Coming Alive

    News: James Neal scored a goal and chipped in an assist, a plus-1 rating and two PIM in Thursday's Game 5 victory over Chicago.
    Analysis: James Neal's really come alive over the last two games, as he's celebrated ending a six-game stretch of futility by starting on a goal-scoring streak. His offense has come in fits and starts this season, so it may be advisable to take advantage while Neal is (relatively) hot.
  • Preds' Neal Finds Twine In Game 4 Loss

    News: James Neal collected his first point of these playoffs Tuesday in Chicago, scoring a goal to go with a plus-1 rating, two PIM and five hits in a Game 4 loss.
    Analysis: Outstanding work by James Neal, who had been on a six-game pointless streak going back to the end of the regular season. Worse, he'd gone minus-6 in that span. It's been a disappointing first year in Nashville for the 27-year-old sniper, who saw an unsurprisingly big reduction in his stats after being traded away from gifted distributors Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin. He's now one game away from seeing his season come to an end, as the Preds are in a 3-1 hole.
  • Preds' Neal Nets Two Points In Return

    News: James Neal returned to the lineup Saturday, potting his 23rd goal of the season and adding an assist in a loss to Dallas.
    Analysis: A terrific return for James Neal, who had missed the previous nine games with an upper-body injury. His goal total is good, but his 37 points in 64 games are a bit of a disappointment. With the playoffs right around the corner, Neal will look to finish the regular season on a high note. He's only got 11 goals in 38 career playoff games, but considering the fact he's now skaing on the top line with Mike Ribeiro and Filip Forsberg, he should continue finding twine at a decent rate.
  • Preds' Neal Back In Lineup Saturday

    News: James Neal (upper body) will return to the lineup Saturday against the Stars, NHL.com's Robby Stanley reports.
    Analysis: James Neal missed the previous nine games with the injury, but was cleared to play after practicing Thursday and Friday without any apparent setbacks. With 35 points this season and only four on the power play, Neal has been a bit of a disappointment in his first season with the Predators, but it's possible the injury might have impacted his performance over the last few games before he was sidelined. The Predators will attempt to get him back on track right away by slotting him on the top line next to the productive duo of Mike Ribeiro and Filip Forsberg.
  • Preds' Neal Practices Thursday

    News: James Neal (upper body) was a full participant in Thursday's practice.
    Analysis: Coach Peter Laviolette was pleased with how James Neal looked during the session. The winger assumed his normal spot on the Preds' first line, and also saw duty in power-play drills, which would seem to suggest he's in line for a return to the lineup Saturday against the Stars. The team probably won't know for certain if Neal will play until after Friday's practice.
  • Preds' Neal Out Until 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.
  • Preds' Neal Remains Sidelined

    News: James Neal (upper body) won't play Sunday against the Flmes, NHL.com's Robby Stanley reports.
    Analysis: James Neal, who last suited up on March 12, thus remains day-to-day as Tuesday's game against the Canucks approaches.
  • Preds' Neal To Miss Road Trip

    News: James Neal (upper body) is in line to miss the Predators' two-game road trip Thursday in Tampa Bay and Saturday in Washington.
    Analysis: James Neal returned to the ice Wednesday for practice, the first time he's skated with the team since sustaining the injury about a week and a half ago. However, the winger will still need more time to demonstrate that he's healthy, making it an easy call for the Predators to rule him out for the trip. If his workouts back in Nashville go well over the next few days, he could be a lineup option for Sunday's tilt with the Flames.