We told you Peter Horachek was fired earlier, and the Predators wasted little time replacing him.
Former NHL player and Team USA World Junior Coach Phil Housley has officially joined the team. As a player Housley was best known as the guy who is the second all time leading scorer among American born players. As a coach? He’s got a gold medal with the USA WJC National Team that included prospect Seth Jones. A defensemen by trade, one would have to assume Housley will be handling that unit himself, leaving Mitch Horn to focus on goaltenders, and Barry Trotz/Lane Lambert working with the forward units. I’m not sure if that’s the setup they will have, or if they will all work on every piece of the game together. Either way it’s a huge sway for the Predators.
The best part about having Housley is, he coached in the World Junior Championships just a few months ago, which means he’s seen first hand what some of the top prospects can do and that would give the Predators an edge in the draft department. We’re banking on the first round pick coming in and playing right away, but if we could make sound picks in the later rounds that develop into playmakers (see Patric Hornqvist, Martin Erat, Craig Smith) then we could easily have a team prepared for deeper and deeper cup runs. It also helps Milwaukee retool quite a bit, which is good because unless something major changes they won’t have Austin Watson next year, nor Ryan Ellis.
So what does this say for the future of the Predators? Who really knows? All I know is, there are changes coming, and we now have proof that management is serious about shaking things up this summer.
That’s all for now.