The conclusion of the NHL Awards last night marks the unofficial turn of the calendar over to a new NHL season.
At the awards on Tuesday, Nashville Predators captain Shea Weber came in third place in voting for the Norris Trophy; while Chicago Blackhawks blueliner Duncan Keith claimed the hardware given to the league’s top defenseman for a second time. No Norris for Weber was a less than desirable ending to a strong 2013-2014 season for the 28-year-old, but the lack of recognition shouldn’t be enough to diminish what was another quality output by one of the league’s top players.
If there’s a positive to draw from last night’s results, it’s that they served as a nice sendoff to a solid NHL campaign.
Starting now, it’s time to look ahead to the 2014-2015 season–that in a way–is already here. Today, NHL clubs are allowed to speak with impending unrestricted free agents (UFAs) in order to outline deals that can be officially signed on July 1. Either through the NHL Entry Draft this weekend or in free agency, the Predators will be trying to add a top-six forward before the start of a new campaign this fall. We’ll find out soon if Nashville General Manager David Poile is successful in filling his club’s biggest need.
Now for the Predlines Headlines:
Right or wrong, there’s a simple rule in most sports awards voting: no postseason appearance equals no trophy.
There are many roads to the NHL and none of them are easy. Interesting look here at Larkin’s journey.
Just two more days until the draft, and all signs are pointing to Nashville selecting a forward. But do they package the pick as a part of a larger deal for a more NHL-ready scorer? It’s very possible.
Looks like one of the best potential UFA forward options for Nashville, Paul Stastny, will test the market.
I’m hearing more that Stastny will listen to other offers. Possibility he could circle back to Avs, but count me as a pessimist
— Adrian Dater (@adater) June 23, 2014
Nashville was very active in the period leading up to the start of free agency last summer (Viktor Stalberg, Eric Nystrom, Matt Hendricks and Carter Hutton were all inked on the first day of the signing period), will they find their guy again over this next week? We’ll find out soon.