Nashville Predators: Raising Draft Age Means Little To Predators

(Photo by Dave Sandford/NHLI via Getty Images)
(Photo by Dave Sandford/NHLI via Getty Images) /

Elliotte Friedman reported that the NHL may consider changing the draft age from 18 to 19. What does this mean for the NHL, and the Nashville Predators?

Many of you will wonder why the NHL wants to change the age of eligibility. Many will wonder what the difference between 18 and 19 is. Well let me tell you, there really is no difference. The NHL isn’t doing this for the players. The NHL, as always, is doing this for the money. It’s the same thing as why the NBA makes players go to college for a year. It’s to keep the junior leagues in the black. While the NHL may have the Pope (something I never thought I’d say) in their corner. It still doesn’t mean they are looking out for the good of their younger players. But it’s not all bad, it could help younger players in theory. So let’s talk about the good, the bad, and how it’ll affect the Nashville Predators.

The good (for the NHL and players)

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This will mean a lot of good news for the NHL and junior leagues. The Canadian Hockey Leagues (WHL, OHL, QMJHL) and NCAA will love this. Star players like Jack Eichel and Connor McDavid won’t be able to play in the NHL right away, forcing them to play for Boston University and Erie, respectively. This wouldn’t have much of an impact on the Canadian teams, the OHL and QMJHL are huge. But It’d be incredible for the NCAA. NCAA hockey got record views when Jack Eichel was on BU. Imagine how much they’d have loved it if Eichel stayed another year? Many American and some Canadian players would consider the NCAA if they knew they’d have to spend at least three years in Junior. This would hopefully boost NCAA ratings and make it more popular in the US. That’s really what the NHL wants.

This isn’t really that great for the players, but it does probably guide them towards college and an education. So at least there’s that.

The bad

There really is not bad for the NHL, besides that McDavid would have to spend another year in junior. Most 18 year olds aren’t ready to play in the NHL in their first year anyways. This kind of seems like a no-lose situation for them.

This hurts the players most of all. All it means is another year of barely being paid anything to be a professional athlete. Kids make absolutely nothing in the NCAA and barely make minimum wage in the CHL. Instead of funneling kids into the CHL and NCAA, I think it’d have an opposite affect. We’d see more cases like Auston Mathews who decided to go play overseas and get paid. Mathews made around 500,000 US dollars and while most other players wouldn’t make that much. They’d definitely make over 100,00 US dollars.

Most importantly, what it means for the Nashville Predators

Honestly, not much. Nashville has done so well in the past few years that they probably won’t draft an NHL ready player. Dante Fabbro, Alexandre Carrier, and Vladislav Kamenev all look impressive. But they took time to develop and are past the age of 19. Good management doesn’t need to draft NHL ready players because good management makes the playoffs.

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I like the idea of raising the draft but all in all I don’t think this will affect the NHL or Nashville Predators like most people think it will.