NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The stick hockey games in the hallways of the Subban house were always a heated affair.
The location changed Friday, but it wasn’t any less intense for Golden Knights goaltender Malcolm Subban.
“Obviously, when I was a kid I was a player still, but I’d always play goalie in the hallway,” he said after the Knights’ morning skate. “I remember P.K. shooting on me telling my dad, ‘He’s pretty good. He should play.’ And my dad’s like, ‘No way. Not a chance he’s playing goalie.’
“It’ll be cool to have him shoot on me, for sure.”
Subban squared off against his older brother, P.K., for the first time as a professional when the Knights took on the Nashville Predators on Friday at Bridgestone Arena.
The Subbans grew up in Toronto and are 4½ years apart.
The 28-year-old P.K., an all-star defenseman for the Predators, is the oldest of three brothers. Malcolm Subban, who turns 24 on Dec. 21, and Jordan, 22, were teammates in juniors, but Friday marked the first time P.K. and Malcolm faced each other.
“Just like any other brothers that have ever played with each other or played against each other, it’s a pretty special moment when you do it,” P.K. Subban said Friday. “I think that, for him, he’s worked really, really hard to get to the NHL. The start of his career has been great, so I’m just going to take in the whole moment.”
The Subbans’ father, Karl, was in attendance for Friday’s game, as the Knights hosted the traditional Dad’s Trip. He made no secret which side he was on.
“I won’t be cheering for (Nashville). I won’t be rooting for P.K.,” Karl Subban told the NHL Network. “I’ll be rooting for Malcolm and the Vegas Golden Knights.”
The Knights headed to Dallas after Friday’s game and meet the Stars at 5 p.m. Saturday at American Airlines Center.
Dallas coach Ken Hitchcock hinted at changes after the Stars gave St. Louis seven power plays in a 3-0 loss Thursday. Goaltender Ben Bishop missed the game with a sore back, but is expected to dress after the team returned goaltender Mike McKenna to the American Hockey League on Friday.
Bishop made 34 stops in a 3-0 victory over the Knights on Nov. 28.
“They played a great game against us,” Knights coach Gerard Gallant said Wednesday. “Sometimes, the other team determines what happens in the game, and that night, they determined that we weren’t going to get scoring chances. Hopefully, we’ll play a lot better.”
The Predators placed forward Ryan Johansen on the injured-reserve list Friday and recalled goalie Anders Lindback from the AHL. Goalie Juuse Saros was reassigned to the AHL after making 43 saves in Tuesday’s 5-2 win over Dallas.
1. Who’s in net? Marc-Andre Fleury participated in the Golden Knights’ pregame skate Friday in Nashville but remains on the injured-reserve list. If he’s not activated, the Knights will go with backup Maxime Lagace or start Malcolm Subban for the second straight game.
2. Power outage. The Stars are struggling on the power play, going 1-for-28 in their past nine games. The Knights are fourth in the NHL in penalty minutes per game (7.4) and will try to limit Dallas’ opportunities with the man advantage.
3. Bump and grind. The Knights were challenged physically by the Stars in the first period Nov. 28 at T-Mobile Arena and faded in the final 40 minutes of Dallas’ 3-0 win. Alex Tuch intimated after the game that the tactics got in some players’ heads. If Dallas uses a similar game plan, the Knights will have to adjust.