Nashville Predators: These Players Are Facing the Most Pressure Entering Season

(Photo by Danny Murphy/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
(Photo by Danny Murphy/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) /
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Nashville Predators
NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE – APRIL 20: Rocco Grimaldi #23 of the Nashville Predators plays against the Dallas Stars in Game Five of the Western Conference First Round during the 2019 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Bridgestone Arena on April 20, 2019 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Frederick Breedon/Getty Images) /

Rocco Grimaldi

Grimaldi isn’t on the same level as Turris and Granlund, but I do think he’s facing an elevated amount of pressure to prove last season wasn’t a fluke. He was lightning in a bottle and was a fun player to watch in the bottom-six. Now he has to show that he can be relied upon as a regular on the roster. His career sample size is still very small, with barely more than a full regular season slate.

Last season Grimaldi flew in under-the-radar. He was flying around all over the ice creating scoring chances and igniting the crowd. Now he’s trying to stick around full-time on the Predators roster. He’s trying to avoid being a healthy scratch on a regular basis. He still has a lot to prove to Laviolette to reserve a spot for him on the fourth or third line.

Grimaldi won his arbitration hearing and earned himself a $1 million contract for one year. More than what the Predators probably wanted to commit. I think he’s worth that deal, but now he has to stick on the roster. His next contract will be very lucrative if he continues to trend upward and be a spark that can flip the ice and create breakaway scoring chances.