We continue our off-season Q&A’s with other Central Division teams today with Blackhawk Up; FanSided’s Chicago Blackhawks blog.
The Predators fared well against the 2013 Stanley Cup Champions last season posting a 4-1-0 record against Chicago. If you forgot the incredible first meeting last season between the Predators and Blackhawks, we have you covered. We should warn you though, the following video will make you miss Predators hockey even more than you already do.
Roll the film.
Predlines Q&A with Blackhawk Up:
What is you favorite moment from the Blackhawks season a year ago?
In my mind, the Blackhawks best moment was captain Jonathan Toews’ overtime goal in Game Five of the quarter-final series against the St. Louis Blues. After dropping the first two games, that goal all but sealed a series victory, as the Hawks rolled back into Chicago winners of three straight games. It was awesome to hear the Scottrade Center deathly quiet besides the rowdy cheers from the boys in white. In the end, there was no better team to do it to than the Blues.
What is your worst memory from playing the Predators last season?
Getting thumped 7-2 in our first meeting of the season definitely takes the cake, even though there was a few moments with the Preds winning 4 of 5 meetings this year. The Blackhawks were playing well heading into that matchup, and the leagues’ most potent offense couldn’t find the net enough against a back-up goaltender, while the defense crumbled.
(seriously, if you scrolled over the video above of this exact game’s highlights go watch them, it’s an instant smile)
Who is your favorite player to watch on the Predators roster?
Mine would be Ryan Ellis. Kind of a surprise pick but you gotta love the guys that play with heart. Earned 4 points in 5 games against us this season, and always had a spring in his stride out there.
Who is your least favorite player on the Predators roster?
Viktor Stalberg. Sure we won a cup with him, but he walked out for nothing last summer, and was brutal in my mind this year. Couldn’t play a 200-foot game to save his life!
If you could have one player on the Predators roster, who would it be?
Seth Jones would answer some of our issues with defensive depth, now that our forward lineup looks incredibly dangerous. The opportunity to see him in a second-pairing role would be a great move to bring in some youth back there.
If that one player was rumored to be in trade talks, what would Chicago’s offer be for said player?
Jones would likely take Johnny Oduya’s spot, so I’d package him in the deal with Trevor Van Reimsdyk and a fifth-rounder.
What do you think about the Predators acquisition of James Neal; predictions?
No Blackhawk is safe from Neal’s cheap-shot tendencies, which is very frightening. Jokes aside, he’s a great pickup for the team, but he’ll have to get used to being the #1 guy like he was in Dallas. No Crosby or Malkin to fall back behind this time.
How long will it take for new Head Coach Peter Laviolette to get the Predators back into the playoffs?
It’s the Central Division, and every team made some improvements this year. It’s going to be tough in 2015, but with another solid off-season, Laviolette may have enough pieces in place to coach the Preds into the post-season in 2016. The next question is who is going to miss the playoffs in your place?
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