As the Nashville Predators bottom defense pairing is looking weak, GM David Poile should consider bringing in unrestricted free agent Ben Hutton.
The Nashville Predators bottom pairing options currently consist of Dan Hamhuis, Yannick Weber and Matt Irwin, all of which being less than impressive, which is why they should take a flier on Ben Hutton.
Hutton, who is currently going into his fifth NHL season, was supposed to be a restricted free agent, but the Vancouver Canucks decided not to tender his qualifying offer.
It is a mystery to me as to why they didn’t do so, as he has been a solid piece to their defense ever since he debuted in 2015.
Sure, his plus/minus has been negative for his entire NHL career, but the Vancouver Canucks teams he has had to play on were absolutely horrible, as they missed the playoffs in every single year of Hutton’s career.
More from Predlines
- Nashville Predators 2023 Training Camp Spotlight: Kiefer Sherwood
- Captain Candidates if Nashville Predators Didn’t Have Roman Josi
- The All-Time 25 Games or Less Nashville Predators Lineup
- Nashville Predators 2023 Training Camp Spotlight: Cody Glass
- Joakim Kemell Flashes his Offense in Nashville Predators Loss to Tampa
His offensive production has been pretty solid as well, with his best season coming in his rookie year where he scored 25 points in 75 games, but his production hasn’t dropped off much since then, omitting the 2017-18 season, where he had six points.
For a 6’2, 206 lb bottom pair defenseman, an 5 goals and 20 points, which he produced last season and fell one assist short of in 2016-17, isn’t that bad, especially for a young player who is still trying to set his footing in the NHL, which is why the Nashville Predators should take a look at him.
He shouldn’t cost the Preds much to sign, considering the Vancouver Canucks didn’t even bother tendering him a qualifying offer, so signing him should be a low risk, high reward scenario that would probably cost them less than $1 million per year.
Hutton could be a solid puck moving defenseman for the bottom pairing, as he is a very good distributor of the puck.
He is also very swift and mobile for his large frame, which is a huge upgrade from what the Nashville Predators have in their arsenal for bottom pairing defensemen right now.
That swiftness is helpful on both offense and defense, as he is a very solid two way defenseman and still has room to grow.
He will be going into his fifth NHL season and could see a break out season, which is why the Nashville Predators should take a flier on him and give him a try on their bottom pairing.