Predators typically fare better in western Canada when they spend more time

The NHL typically does what it can to make the Nashville Predators’ longest journey a short trip.

That doesn’t necessarily do the Predators any favors, though.

More often than not when Nashville travels to Vancouver, Calgary and Edmonton it hits all three western Canada cities in a span of four days, as is the case beginning Thursday when a four-game road trip kicks off at Vancouver (9 p.m., Fox Sports-Tennessee). After that is Calgary on Friday and Edmonton on Sunday.

It will be the 15th time in eight seasons beginning in 2005-06 the Predators played at all three places in succession and the ninth time they squeezed those three games into four days. They’ll do it again in two months when they start at Edmonton on March 18.

Historically, a little rest along the way has produced better results.

Nashville’s record over that span when they’ve played all three in four days is 11-12-1. When it has had five days or more the record is 12-4-2.

In 2009-10, for example, the Predators went 5-1-0 on two swings through the area. The first covered six days and the second took five days. The following season they started with three-in-four and went 1-2-0 (the victory was in a shootout) then had six days on their return trip and went 1-1-1.

The only times Nashville swept all three on a single swing was Oct. 28, 31 and Nov. 1, 2006 (five days) and Nov. 11, 12 and 15, 2009 (five days).