Tag Archives: nashville predators

Infograph: 2013-14 Shea Weber

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Yea, I’m the quiet blogger during the summer months when it comes to hockey (if you are just now figuring that out). That doesn’t mean I am not thinking about hockey; oh no. This brain of mine is hockey-filled, I just leave the other bloggers to the nitty-gritty during the off-season. …Unless something major happens.

Any who, you’ve probably already checked out the “mini” infograph (as I so lovingly call it) on Shea Weber. You likey? Whether you do or not, I will be putting more of these out before the season starts just to reflect on some numbers and/or facts from last season. Why don’t you just type it all out, you ask? Because I am obsessed with infographs and this gives me a chance to enhance my graphic skills and cover hockey, too.

Feel free to “pin” this to your Pinterest board, ladies (and gentlemen), but please do not crop out the bottom. Credit is given where credit is do. Plus, I’ve stuck hidden @Lady_Preds script throughout the image, so there’s no use.

But please enjoy this as much as I enjoyed creating it.
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Simon Moser joins SC Bern

fdfdIn case you start digging through the Preds and Admirals roster and cannot find him, Simon Moser will be starting the season with Schlittschuh Club Bern, better known as SC Bern. This may be news to some, but Moser has a valid contract with SC Bern until 2015. However, said contract includes a NHL out-clause until November 15th, which means if he is given an offer from a NHL team before that date, he can leave the club without retribution. If he does not accept an offer from the NHL by November 15th, the 25-year-old Swiss will finish out the 2014-15 season with SC Bern. Now, you may be asking, “Why hasn’t Nashville presented him anything?” Well, they have. Nashville pitched Moser a qualifying offer for the League minimum at the beginning of July, but turned it down because of a low AHL salary.

So, unless Nashville comes back with a better offer (which, IMO, they won’t), Moser may be smitten by a deal from another NHL team, or could be sticking around Switzerland permanently.

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Preds Sign Roy & Ribeiro to 1YR Deals

PicMonkey Collage

Who knew Nashville was in need of a few Centers? Late this morning, word came trickling through the social media world that David Poile had signed two Centers to the Nashville Predators roster. Those two? Former Phoenix Arizona Coyote, Mike Ribeiro (1-year, $1.05M) and former St. Louis Blue, Derek Roy (1-year, $1M). Both veterans of their trade, Ribeiro was drafted 45th overall in the 1998 Draft by the Montreal Canadiens and Roy drafted 32nd overall in the 2001 Draft by the Buffalo Sabres. They have both put up some outstanding numbers during their tenure, but – as more athletes do – have started to decline as they’ve aged. But let’s not forget Nashville just got away with a steal of a deal. Ribeiro, Roy and Jokinen each for 1 year for a total of $4.55M? Poile, you crazy GM, you! As I type, GM David Poile is hosting a presser to address the two new signees, with Ribeiro at his side. Here are some snippets from the press conference:

What? A player actually sought out Nashville on his own accord? Take that, Spezza. So, how many Centers does Nashville have now? Let’s see: Wilson, Ribeiro, Roy, Jokinen, Cullen, Gaustad, Smith, Jarnkrok, and Fisher (though he’s down for the count). That means someone will have to “fight for their job” as Poile has stated.

Interesting information coming out of the Preds organization this afternoon! We will add more as the presser continues and as more information becomes available.

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Preds Sign Volchenkov; Fisher Out 4-6 Months

PicMonkey Collage

After a relatively quiet 4th of July weekend, the Predators have been awfully active for a Monday afternoon. An hour or so ago, the Predators announced the signing of veteran defenseman, Anton Volchenkov for a one-year, $1 million contract. Volchenkov, a native of Russia, was offered a KHL contract with SKA St. Petersburg if no team from the NHL showed interest, but Nashville snatched him up for a good price — his former contract with the New Jersey Devils was a 6-year, $25.5 million. The left-handed Volchenkov will probably land on the second line and pair with right-hander Seth Jones for now.

On to more pressing news is the loss of Mike Fisher, who suffered a ruptured Achilles tendon thus placing him on the IR for at least 4-6 months… ouch. Fisher, who has been weighing his career options, may find this is the turning point to retire early, but we shall see. Fisher had his surgery to repair the torn tendon last Thursday, July 3rd. As you may imagine, now that this news is out, rumors of Nashville taking a stab at veteran, Vincent Lecavalier are becoming more and more heated. Personally, I don’t think it’ll happen, but with David Poile at the helm, anything is possible.

We will continue to update as more information on both players becomes available.

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Preds sign Olli Jokinen to One-Year Contract

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The Internet’s most gifed (sp?) hockey player (IMO) has landed in the arms of the Nashville Predators. David Poile dipped his feet into the Free Agency Waters this afternoon, after missing out on the likes of Paul Stastny, who ended up going back home to St. Louis during yesterday’s debacle. Jokinen, who scored 18 goals & posted 43 points last season with the Winnipeg Jets, isn’t the first free agent that came to mind yesterday when free agency finally took effect; but don’t count him out as a David Poile dud. Jokinen, though 35, has a lot of spunk behind him and is still going strong, despite his numbers dropping (but hey, that’s what happens when you get older). And, if things don’t end up working out, DP got the waffle-loving center for only $2.5M and a one-year contract. Don’t shut down the computers yet, Preds fans; we have a feeling DP is still testing the water before the day’s over. Until the next move, here’s the infamous waffle gif of your newest Nashville Predator:
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Hornqvist & Spaling to Pens for James Neal

JamesNealTrade

By now, you already know about the trade between Nashville and Pittsburgh involving the exchange of Patric Hornqvist and Nick Spaling for Right Winger, James Neal. Has it had time to sink in yet? Nick Spaling was on the radar to take flight, but Hornqvist came as a surprise to just about everyone.

James Neal, first drafted in the second round in the 2005 Draft by the Dallas Stars, was a goal collector from the get-go. Scoring no less than 20-goals a season, in the 2011-12 season, Neal topped the charts with 40 goals — as a Preds fan, could you imagine forty goals from one player, not a multitude of several together? Since the 2011-12 season, he has lost some steam, but in Predators terms, he’s still on fire (again, no less than twenty goals since).

Though the loss of Hornqvist tears deeply at the heartstrings — the price of being a fan — now that the dust has settled from yesterday’s trade, you’ll be able to see with clearer eyes that, in order for the Predators to make the move towards the ultimate prize, sacrifices must be made. Unfortunately, Hornqvist was that sacrifice (sorry, Spals). This is a great sign from the leaders of this organization that good things are on the horizon. Moves like these are (for Nashville’s sake) what it is going to take for Nashville to get back in the playoff chase and make a legitimate run towards the Stanley Cup.

Here’s an exchange between the media, James Neal and Evgeni Malkin:
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malkin

That was a good little .gif set to find, right? Neal wants t he puck. He wants to shoot. For a defensive team like Nashville, this is the exact exchange we want to hear from former teammates. Shooting leads to goals. Goals leads to winning. Winning leads to playoffs. Playoffs lead to Cup. Sounds like a no-brainer, right?

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Laviolette named Head Coach of Predators

Courtesy: Yahoo! Images

Courtesy: Yahoo! Images

Sorry I’m late to the party — I was actually at LP Field (where the Tennessee Titans play, for those of you who are NFL-challenged) on a tour with my company when the news broke. Any who, so by now you know Nashville has hired Peter Laviolette as the new Head Coach, the second HC in Predators franchise history. Laviolette has had his name in the hat since Trotz was handed the pink slip, so it was no surprise when it was finally announced that he would be taking over the coveted position.

Laviolette agreed to a multi-year contract and is a former head coach of the Philadelphia Flyers, Carolina Hurricanes and New York Islanders. He ended up winning a Stanley Cup in 2006 with the Hurricanes and went to the Cup Final with the Flyers in 2010. Philadelphia then fired him early in the 2013-14 season, though Laviolette has a 389-282-25-63 overall NHL record; Trotz’s record? 557-479-60-100.

With the presence of a new HC, you know that means some of the pieces to the Trotz administration will change. Though Lane Lambert and Phil Housley are expected to stay with Nashville, goal-tending Coach Mitch Korn will more than likely go with Trotz on his future endeavors, which is a detrimental loss for Nashville.

The Predators will be having a formal presser at 2PM CT and we will add more details as they arrive.

Highlights from the press conference:

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Weber Finalist for Norris Trophy

Courtesy: Yahoo! Images

Courtesy: Yahoo! Images

As we all expected, Nashville Predators Captain Shea Weber was named one of three finalists for the Norris Trophy. This is Weber’s third time being nominated for the James Norris Memorial Award, given out to the League’s top defenseman who displays the greatest efforts in the position. Being the only player with 20+ goals (23), 150+ hits (169), and 150+ blocks (173) over the past nine seasons, is this finally Shea Weber’s year? Is the third time really a charm? We hope so. His competition for the Norris? Boston’s giant, Zdeno Chara and Chicago’s Duncan Keith. Chara won the Norris back in 2009 and was nominated in both 2011 and 2012 for the award. Keith has also been awarded the Norris Trophy in the past, collecting the award in 2010.

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Barry Trotz Out as Head Coach

Courtesy: Zimbio.com

Courtesy: Zimbio.com

Though you knew it was coming, it was announced just moments ago that Barry Trotz was relieved of his duties as Head Coach with the Nashville Predators.
Trotz has been there from the get-go; he even had a hand in selecting the franchise name. But after fifteen years and with little hope for a Stanley Cup, it was time to part ways.

What Barry Trotz has done for this organization cannot be overlooked nor replaced. He helped establish Nashville as a contender in hockey and placed Nashville on a permanent ice hockey map when it was deemed nearly impossible. Calling him a class act is an understatement & he will be genuinely missed, even by those who have been calling for his head since the beginning.

Though details as to who will be his replacement or any set reason for his firing haven’t been released, we will post it as soon as information becomes available. As for those wondering what will happen to Trotz? Don’t worry – he won’t be unemployed for long; he will make another NHL General Manager extremely happy.

What were your favorite Trotzy moments?

New Details:

  • Per the official press release, Trotz has been offered a position with the Predators Hockey Ops Department.
  • General Manager David Poile to host press conference at 3:30PM to discuss the details of this morning’s news.

 

News from the Press Conference:

 

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Seek Change or Bent on Tradition: Nashville’s Fan Base

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Though the odds were slim (miniscule, even), coming into last night’s game against Dallas, Nashville still had a shot at squeezing into a playoff spot. And, in a fashion fit for a Hallmark movie, the deciding factor came down to a shootout; an area Nashville has struggled with this season and in the past. The Predators, in order to keep that playoff hope alive, needed the full two-points of a win over the Dallas Stars. Did last night’s game have a happy ending?

No.

Gabriel Bourque’s two goals kept the game tied to send it into overtime and inevitably into a shootout; Roman Josi’s shootout goal pushed Nashville to another round, but it was with the leadership of Captain Jamie Benn that snuffed the light on Nashville’s playoff hopes; and possibly a few positions as well.

No one likes missing the playoffs and, every season that is cut short, doesn’t mean heads should roll as a consequence. But for Nashville, struggle to make it to the playoffs, let alone contend, has been a multi-year occurrence. It may finally be time to put the focus on the coaching staff and their guidance. Now, before you accuse me of hating on Barry Trotz, let’s get this straight: Barry Trotz is an amazing leader on and off the ice. As Patten Fuqua so nicely put it:

The same goes for David Poile. Some times, it’s just better to take a step back, re-evaluate the situation, and move on. Both Trotz and Poile have been at the helm of the Nashville Predators organization for fifteen years, but when you continuously hit a rut every season in just about the same area (i.e. no playoffs – second round), it’s time to make changes (and not necessarily on the player-front). Though committed wholly to this organization, many players have begun expressing their frustration; some have even asked to be traded. Will we see players ask to be traded over this upcoming off-season? Maybe, maybe not, but we wouldn’t blame them.

It’s easy for fans to turn on each other at this point; you have two dividing sides: Those seeking a major change and those bent on tradition.
Neither side is more of a “loyal fan” than the other, but at times, it gets down right vicious. But honestly, what doesn’t tempt vicious behavior on Social Media?
Everyone’s opinion is different and everyone’s view on how the team and organization can benefit varies, but let’s be honest here: Nothing proceeds without change. The game is changing and the Predators need reflect those changes before the organization winds up somewhere in Canada. I’m not saying the Predators need to throw everything out and start from scratch, but some hard-hitting decisions and changes need to be made and first and foremost is to re-evaluate the coaching staff.

So what if Trotz and Poile are booted in the off-season? Does that mean Nashville will be in the Stanley Cup finals during the 2014-15 season? No, not it doesn’t (though that’d be pretty nice). What it does mean, however, is that the organization has taken responsibility for its continuous issues and has taken what it thinks are the necessary steps in order to push forward. It also shows that the organization realizes that relying solely on a goaltender and putting the blame on his absence is complete nonsense and asinine. Mind you, the team won 27 games without Rinne, so please, put that ideology to rest, will ya?

I could dive into the details, the stats, what have you regarding why the Predators need a major change, but I will leave that to the other bloggers (they have a little bit more time and resources than I do). I can see both sides of the fan base debate, but the point of this post is to get both sides thinking. Do you want to see this organization prosper? Do you want the team you canonize to hoist the Stanley Cup? Then take a step back, re-evaluate your perspective, and allow some sort of change to happen.

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